Lepper v. Eastern Idaho Health Services

Plaintiffs-appellants Charles and Janice Lepper filed a medical malpractice suit against defendants Eastern Idaho Health Service, Inc. d/b/a Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center (EIRMC) and Dr. Stephen R. Marano, (Dr. Marano). The Leppers alleged Dr. Marano rendered Charles a paraplegic. The Leppers appealed a district court's grant of summary judgment to defendants, arguing that the trial court erred in ruling that based on the language of its Scheduling Order, the Leppers’ expert witness disclosures required disclosure of all expert witness opinions, including foundational facts required by statute. After review, the Idaho Supreme Court vacated and remanded."We decline to hold the Leppers to a higher disclosure standard than what was required by the plain language of the Scheduling Order. Again, the district court was free to issue a more detailed scheduling order explicitly requiring such foundational facts, but without doing so, the Leppers could not be held to more demanding disclosure requirements that they had no prior notice of. We note that the supplemental affidavits in this case detailing the applicable standard of care for both experts were provided well before the discovery deadline. In any event, we hold that because the district court read requirements into its Scheduling Order that did not appear on the face of the order, the court abused its discretion in excluding [The Leppers'] experts." Because the district court's decision regarding the experts carried through and was the basis of the denial of the Leppers' motions for reconsideration, the Court determined the district court abused its discretion in those decisions too. View "Lepper v. Eastern Idaho Health Services" on Justia Law