Thursday, June 25, 2015

Trial Court Addresses Questionnaires/Pain Diagrams for IMEs

The Dauphin County Court of Common Pleas recently addressed the issue of whether a Plaintiff is required to fill out a questionnaire and/or a pain diagram relative to an IME in the case of Maguire v. Liberty Mut. Group, No. 2014-CV-1036 (C.P. Dauph. Co. June 1, 2015 Bratton, J.).

In this motor vehicle accident matter, the Plaintiff was set up for an IME and the IME vendor company sent an IME Questionnaire and a MVA and Pain Diagram form to be filled out by the Plaintiff prior to the IME.  The Plaintiff objected to these documents as impermissible discovery sent by a non-party.  The defense asserted that these documents were a normal part of a physical examination by a physician and were permitted under Pa.R.C.P. 4010.  The issue was then brought before the court for resolution.

Reviewing the wording of Rule 4010, Judge Bratton noted that the Rule provides that "oral interrogation" of the person to be examined is allowed on issues germane to the claims of damages presented.  Based on this plain wording of Rule 4010 and the absence of any rule allowing a non-party to propound discovery in a litigation, the court sustained the Plaintiff's objections to the pre-IME documentation at issue.

Anyone wishing to secure a copy of this Maguire decision by Judge Bratton may contact me at

I send thanks to the prevailing Plaintiff's Attorney Robert Claraval of the Harrisburg, PA law firm of Claraval & Claraval for forwarding a copy of this decision to my attention.

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