It is worth noting that situations similar to those described in this medical malpractice case could just as easily occur at any of the healthcare facilities in the area, such as Kaiser Permanente, UC Davis Medical Center, Mercy, or Sutter.
(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this wrongful death case and its proceedings.)
Defendant Medical Center Foundation Hospitals, Inc.’s Opposition to Plaintiff’s Motions in Limine
Defendants object to the format of Plaintiffs motions to the extent that they fail to comply with any relevant requirements indicated in the Evidence Code, Code of Civil Procedure and the Rules of Court.
OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFF’S MOTIONS IN LIMINE NO. 2 AND NO. 21 REGARDING COLLATERAL SOURCE BENEFITS
Plaintiff seeks to exclude at trial all reference to the fact that any death benefit life insurance, Department of Veterans’ Affairs benefits, or other benefits were paid (or will be paid in the future) to Plaintiff. (Plaintiff’s Motion in Limine No. 2.) Plaintiff also seeks to exclude at trial all references regarding whether David Hill or Stella Hill, or both, received any compensation, insurance payment, or benefit from a collateral source as to the payment of medical, hospital, health care provider expenses. (Plaintiffs Motion in Limine No. 21.) For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.
A governing principle under MICRA is to disallow plaintiff from recovering amounts for medical expenses in excess of the amount paid or incurred. The reason for the collateral source rule is that such evidence gives the jury a more complete picture of the extent of damages and reimbursement already provided to the plaintiff.
The underlying purpose of MICRA is to avoid a double recovery. Similarly, under the circumstances here, plaintiffs are seeking compensation based on the projected economic contributions Mr. Hill would have been entitled to, and may have received, had he not eloped from the Sacramento facility and met a fatal end. Plaintiff seeks special damages for lost wages/income calculated from lost pension based upon Mr. Hill’s anticipated retirement from the Army in about 2011, and lost wages he would have earned at a new job, after leaving the military. All of this evidence is relevant to the damages assessment in this case and should properly be admitted into evidence.
This motion will be based on the grounds that Civil Code § 3333.1 permits a medical malpractice defendant to introduce evidence of such collateral source benefits such as survivor and VA benefit payments received by or payable to the Plaintiff. Fein v. Permanente Medical Group, (1985) 38 Cal.3d 137, 164. (See Part 2 of 5.)
For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.