Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Addresses The Client Exception to Pa.R.C.P. 4003.6 Regarding Discovery Sought From a Treating Physician

In the case of Mertis v. Oh, No. 31 MAP 2023 (Pa. June 18, 2024)(Op. By Mundy, J.), the Pennsylvania Supreme Court had previously granted allowance of appeal to consider the application of Pennsylvania Rule of Civil Procedure 4003.6, which provides:

Rule 4003.6. Discovery of Treating Physician

Information may be obtained from the treating physician of a party only upon written consent of that party or through a method of discovery authorized by this chapter. This rule shall not prevent an attorney from obtaining information from

(1) the attorney’s client,

(2) an employee of the attorney’s client, or

(3) an ostensible employee of the attorney’s client.

In this case, the Court was tasked with determining whether the first exception to Rule 4003.6 (client exception) permits an attorney to obtain information outside the discovery process from one of the plaintiff’s nonparty treating physicians, who becomes the attorney’s client after another attorney in the same law firm became previously engaged to represent a named defendant physician in the same medical malpractice action.

The Court concluded that Rule 4003.6 precludes a law firm representing a defendant treating physician from obtaining information outside the discovery process from a nonparty treating physician by subsequently entering into an attorney-client relationship with the nonparty treating physician, we affirm the Superior Court.

Anyone wishing to review the Majority Opinion may be viewed at this LINK.  The Concurring Opinion may be viewed at this LINK.

Source of image:  Photo by Pixabay on www.pexels.com.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.