NEGLIGENCE, MEDICAL MALPRACTICE, EVIDENCE, CIVIL PROCEDURE.
The Court of Appeals determined the trial court did not abuse its discretion when it denied plaintiff’s motion to strike defendant’s expert’s testimony. The “expert-evidence” notice indicated the expert would testify about the cause of plaintiff’s decedent’s death but did not indicate the substance of the testimony. At trial the expert did not agree with the cause described in the autopsy report (pneumonia) and testified death was attributable to cardiac arrhythmia. The motion to strike argued the “expert notice” was deficient because it did not provide any detail about the expert’s opinion. Because the lack of detail was obvious pre-trial, the mid-trial objection was properly overruled:
Plaintiff made her motion mid-trial immediately prior to the expert’s testimony. Plaintiff argues that at the time of the expert exchange, she had no reason to object to the disclosure statement because the statement gave no indication that defendant would challenge plaintiff’s theory of decedent’s cause of death. Assuming defendant’s disclosure was deficient, such deficiency was readily apparent; the disclosure identified “causation” as a subject matter but did not provide any indication of a theory or basis for the expert’s opinion. This is not analogous to a situation in which a party’s disclosure was misleading or the trial testimony was inconsistent with the disclosure. Rather, the issue here was insufficiency.
The trial court’s ruling did not endorse the sufficiency of the statement but instead addressed the motion’s timeliness. The lower courts were entitled to determine, based on the facts and circumstances of this particular case, that the time to challenge the statement’s content had passed because the basis of the objection was readily apparent from the face of the disclosure statement and could have been raised — and potentially cured — before trial. Rivera v Montefiore Med. Ctr., 2016 NY Slip Op 06854, CtApp 10-20-16
NEGLIGENCE (MEDICAL MALPRACTICE, MID-TRIAL OBJECTION TO SUFFICIENCY OF EXPERT-NOTICE PROPERLY OVERRULED AS UNTIMELY)/MEDICAL MALPRACTICE (MID-TRIAL OBJECTION TO SUFFICIENCY OF EXPERT-NOTICE PROPERLY OVERRULED AS UNTIMELY)/EVIDENCE (MEDICAL MALPRACTICE, EXPERT EVIDENCE, MID-TRIAL OBJECTION TO SUFFICIENCY OF EXPERT-NOTICE PROPERLY OVERRULED AS UNTIMELY)/CIVIL PROCEDURE (MEDICAL MALPRACTICE, MID-TRIAL OBJECTION TO SUFFICIENCY OF EXPERT-NOTICE PROPERLY OVERRULED AS UNTIMELY)