The following blog entry is written from a defendant’s position as trial approaches. Reviewing this kind of briefing should help potential plaintiffs and clients better understand how parties in personal injury cases present such issues to the court.
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.
The Work Product Privilege Terminates And The Expert’s Knowledge And Opinions Are Subject To Discovery and Disclosure Upon Expert Designation For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.
It has long been recognized that the work of an expert-consultant is protected by the attorney’s work product privilege. (Williamson v. Superior Court (1978) 21 Cal.3d 829, 834; Mack v. Superior Court (1968) 259 Cal.App.2d 7, 11) It is obvious why an expert’s work production is shielded under the broad scope of the attorney’s work-product privilege. The expert is employed by counsel to form an opinion which he may later present as a witness in court. He is also engaged as an adviser on trial preparation and tactics for the case and in this latter capacity serves as a professional consultant to counsel on the technical and forensic aspects of his specialty.
Nevertheless, this immunity under the work-product privilege is completely abrogated when an individual voluntarily discloses himself as an expert. At that point, all of the expert’s knowledge, opinion, reports as well as all communications with other experts regarding the case are open and subject to discovery and disclosure. The knowledge, opinions, and report of an expert consulted by an attorney in presentation of his case remain immune from disclosure under the attorney’s work product privilege as long as the expert does not change his status as a consultant-expert. If the attorney does not use and does not communicate a decision to use the expert as a witness, the adverse party may not obtain disclosure of the expert’s knowledge, opinions, or report by means of any pretrial discovery vehicle or by calling the expert as a witness at the trial. (Brokopp v. Ford Motor Co., (1977) 71 Cal. App. 3d 841, 847.) (See Part 2 of 5.)
For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.