In North Shore Medical Center v. Cigna Health and Life Insurance Co. (11th Cir., No. 22-10514, 5/25/2023), the court held that the plaintiff’s expert’s report created a triable issue of material fact, and consequently the district court should not have granted the defendant’s motion for summary judgment. In a concurring opinion, a member of the panel pointed out that one section of the defendant’s expert’s report supported the plaintiff’s position on the triable issue and hence was an independent reason for denying summary judgment.
That’s an unkind title, I know. But really, when the plaintiff’s attorney submitted a pharmacist’s affidavit in opposition to a physician’s motion for summary judgment (which was supported by a physician’s affidavit), what did he think was going to happen?
If that headline made you blink, don’t worry – you read it correctly, and it accurately states what happened. The case is Markel v. Douglas Technologies Group, https://ecf.ca8.uscourts.gov/opndir/20/08/192637P.pdf (8th Cir.
The importance of expert opinion (offered either by affidavit or in deposition testimony) in summary judgment practice cannot be overstated. We have previously written about this in a number of different contexts: medical malpractice (https://www.videntpartners.com/blog/2019/medical-expert’s-affidavit-opposition-summary-judgment-fails-establish-triable-issue), health insurance coverage (
Surprisingly, the Wisconsin Supreme Court recently split 5-4 on this seemingly noncontroversial question. The case is Strauss v.
This case points up the extreme care and attention to detail that a plaintiff’s attorney must exercise in reviewing an expert’s affidavit in opposition to summary judgment. The case is Fernandez v. Alexander (Calif. Ct.