DEPOSITION OUTLINE OF A MEDICAL MALPRACTRICE DEFENSE EXPERT

DEPOSITION OUTLINE OF A MEDICAL MALPRACTRICE DEFENSE EXPERT

There are a volume of available ideas and outlines for the discovery deposition of a medical malpractice expert including advice to not take the deposition at all in some circumstances. Here is a very basic outline, you can use as a format for your case.

A.        INTRODUCTION

1.         Identification of attorney.

2.         Important to understand question before answering.

B.        QUALIFICATIONS

1.         SEE WITNESSES biography

(a)        BIRTH DATE

(b)        MARITAL STATUS

2        GENERAL EDUCATION OUTLINE: SCHOOLS APPLIED FOR & REJECTED?

3.      DEGREES

4.   ADDITIONAL, TRAINING, SEMINARS & EDUCATION

5. ARTICLES WRITTEN & SEMINARS PLUS SPEECHES GIVEN

6. MEMBERSHIP IN PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATIONS

Note:   Ask if U.S. citizen but MEDICALLY trained abroad:

(1)        Why not accepted in US

(2)        What proficiency in that language (if courses not in English)

(3)        Where was ECFMG exam taken, how many times, other exams taken?

Note: If foreign born:

(1)        In U.S. on exchange visa?

(2)        Immigration status? – Citizenship?

(3)        Required to or plans to return home to practice?

7.         Internship

(1)        NAME OF HOSPITAL/LOCATION

(2)        YEAR ENTERED & YEAR COMPLETED

(3)        STRAIGHT OR ROTATING INTERNSHIP

(4)        OTHER INTERNSHIPS APPLIED FOR BUT REJECTED

8.         Residency

(1)        NAME OF HOSPITAL/LOCATION

(2)        YEARS ATTENDED

a.         IF COMPLETED AT NEW HOSPITAL – WHY?

(3)        CHIEF RESIDENCY

(4)        ACCREDITED RESIDENCY

9.         Fellowship

a)        subspecialist TRAINING

(b)        NAME OF INSTITUTION/LOCATION

(c)        YEARS ATTENDED

(d)       OTHER PROGRAMS APPLIED FOR & REJECTED

10.         Board Certification:

( a)        ORAL EXAM: SUCCESSFUL FIRST TIME? HOW MANY TIMES TAKE IT TO PASS?

(b)        WRITTEN: SAME

(c)       RE CERTIFICATION?

11.         Licenses:

(1)        Licenses held

(2)        Licenses applied for but did not get

(3)        Licenses surrendered

12.         Work Experience: ACADEMIC & WORK HISTORY

(a)        ADMINISTRATIVE vs CLINICAL

(1)        Academic:

a.         DEPARTMENT

b.         FACULTY RANK (TENURE)

c.         FULL TIME/PART TIME/CLINICAL

d.         NUMBER OF FACULTY IN DEPARTMENT

e.         PROMOTIONS REFUSED

f.          RESPONSIBILITIES

(i)         PERCENTAGE OF ADMINISTRATIVE, ACADEMIC, RESEARCH, DELIVERY OF MEDICAL

g.         NAME OF CHAIRMAN OF DEPARTMENT

h,      NUMBER OF TIMES INVOLVED IN THIS TYPE OF PT CARE WITHOUT SUPERVISION

13.         Hospital Privileges

(a)        NAME & LOCATION OF PRIMARY HOSPITAL

(b)        TYPE OF PRIVILEGES: Admitting, Consulting or Courtesy IN WHAT AREA

(c)        APPLICATIONS REJECTED

(d)       PRIVILEGES: surrendered, suspended, curtailed, revoked or modified FOR ANY REASON

14.         Disciplinary matters

(a)        SUBJECT OF ANY MEDICAL DISCIPLINARY PROCEEDINGS

(b)        REASON & RESULT

C.        PROFESSIONAL LEGAL ENTITIES

1.         Professional Associations All  PARTNERSHIP, CORPORATION OR OTHER

D.        GENERAL BIAS

1.         Involvement in this Case:

(1)        HOW BECAME INVOLVED IN THIS CASE

(2)        INVOLVEMENT WITH EXPERT WITNESS AGENCY?

a.         NAME & LOCATION

b.         FINANCIAL ARRANGEMENT WITH AGENCY

c.         HOW LONG HAD ARRANGEMENT

d.         HOW MANY CASES THRU AGENCY?

2.         RELATIONSHIP TO ANY DEFENDANT’S ATTORNEY OR  LAW FIRM?

a.         AS RETAINED EXPERT

b.         TO REVIEW FILES

c.         AS CLIENT

3.         RELATIONSHIP TO ANY DEFENDANT IN THIS CASE?

a.         SOCIAL/PROFESSIONAL

b.         PATIENT REFERRAL

4.         KNOWLEDGE OR RELATIONSHIP TO OTHER DEFENSE EXPERTS

5.         WITNESS EVER NAMED IN LAWSUIT AS DEFENDANT OR PLAINTIFF? DETAILS

a.         MEDICAL MALPRACTICE CASES?

E.         PAST EXPERIENCE AS EXPERT WITNESS

1.         WHEN FIRST BEGAN ACTING AS EXPERT WITNESS

a.         DOES WITNESS NOW OR HAS HE EVER ADVERTISED? FULL DETAILS: COSTS, WHERE,

2.         NUMBER OF CASES REVIEWED

a.         LAST YEAR

b.         OVER CAREER TO DATE

3.         GENERAL SUBJECT MATTER OF SIMILAR CASES REVIEWED

a.         IDENTIFICATION OF CASES & ATTORNEYS

4.         PERCENTAGE OF CASES FOR PLAINTIFF vs DEFENDANT PAST TWO YEARS & CAREER

a.         EVER TESTIFIED IN CASE THAT DEFENDANT WAS NEGLIGENT?

b.         HOW MANY TIMES? FULL DETAILS

5          HOW MANY PAST DEPOSITIONS GIVEN?

Note: Get full information so we can get copies

6.         HOW MANY PAST TIMES TESTIFIED IN COURT?

Note: Get information so we can get transcript

7.         WRITTEN ANY BOOKS/ARTICLES/OR LECTURED ABOUT CASES LIKE THIS?

a.         HOW TO BE AN EXPERT WITNESS

b.         MALPRACTICE IN GENERAL

8.         EVER TESTIFIED AT DEPOSITION AS AN EXPERT WITNESS IN A MEDICAL MALPRACTICE CASE THAT, IN YOUR OPINION, SOME OTHER DOCTOR HAD BEEN NEGLIGENT OR DEPARTED FROM THE STANDARD OF CARE?

a.         HOW MANY TIMES?

b.         TREATING DOC OR HIRED EXPERT

9.         POLITICAL INVOLVEMENT IN MEDICAL MALPRACTICE/TORT REFORM?

F.         WORK DONE & BILLING RATE

1.         CHARGE PER HOUR

a.         PREPARATION WORK

b.         DEPOSITION TIME

c.         TRIAL

2.         TRAVEL, MEALS, LODGING IN ADDITION?

3.         AMOUNT EARNED LAST YEAR AS EXPERT WITNESS?

4.         AVERAGE EARNINGS PER YEAR OVER CAREER?

5.         HIGHEST FEE EVER EARNED IN ONE CASE?

a.         AMOUNT & DETAILS

6.         ANY CONTINGENT FEE ARRANGEMENT INVOLVED IN THIS CASE FOR WITNESSES FEE?

7.         PERCENTAGE OF TOTAL INCOME FROM EXPERT WITNESS WORK?

8.         HOURS TO DATE THIS CASE?

9.         BILLING TO DATE THIS CASE?

10.       WHAT ADDITIONAL WORK PLANNED AFTER THIS DEPO?

G.        PREPARATION & ROLE

1.         EXACTLY WHAT ASKED TO DO?

(1)     EMPLOYMENT EMAIL, MEMO OR LETTER?

(2)        WRITTEN MEMO OF THIS?

2.         What did to Prepare:

(1)        WHAT PROVIDED WHEN ASKED TO PARTICIPATE AS EXPERT?

(2)        WHAT DONE/PROVIDED AFTERWARDS?

(3)        ALL MATERIAL REVIEWED INCLUDING PHOTOS, DEPOS, RECORDS) & WORK DONE T

Note: Important to identify all depos read

3.         ALL CONTACTS MADE:

a.         VISIT TO HOSPITAL INVOLVED

   (1)     EXACTLY WHAT DONE, TESTS, PHOTOS, MEASUREMENTS

   (2)     WHEN, HOW MANY TIMES, WHO PRESENT

b.         COMMUNICATION WITH DEF, OTHER EXPERTS, PLAINTIFFS, FAMILY FRIENDS OR PHYSICIANS

4.         RESEARCH DONE

a.         AUTHORITATIVE MATERIALS OR BOOKS

Note: See witnesses file. Review for notes,reports etc.

5.         PERSONAL KNOWLEDGE OF FACTS OR OPINIONS BASED ON INFORMATION PROVIDED TO YOU?

6.         What material generated:                   

(a)        REPORTS & NOTES GENERATED

(b)        MEMOS

(c)        NOTES MADE IN DEPOS OR MATERIALS IDENTIFIED

H.        KNOWLEDGE RE WASHINGTON STATE (If Witness from out of State)

1.         FAMILIARITY WITH WASHINGTON STATE

(1)       EVER INVOLVED WITH SIMILAR CASE IN WASHINGTON

(2)        ACTED AS EXPERT INVOLVING CASE IN THIS STATE IN PAST? DETAILS

2.         EVER PRACTICED:

(1)        IN THIS STATE OF WASHINGTON?

(2)        THIS HOSPITAL?

3.         EVER BEEN TO WASHINGTON?  DETAILS                

4.         WHEN YOU TOOK THE TEST FOR BOARD CERTIFICATION, WAS THERE ANYTHING IN THE TEST THAT ASKED YOU WHAT STATE OR CITY YOU WERE GOING TO PRACTICE MEDICINE IN?

5.         DID THE ANSWERS APPLY TO THE STANDARD OF CARE TAUGHT EVERYWHERE IN THE COUNTRY?

6.         DID YOU CHANGE YOUR STANDARD OF PRACTICE WHEN YOUR ARRIVED IN _______________________________________?

7.         ARE YOU PRACTICING THE SAME QUALITY AND STANDARD OF MEDICINE THAT YOU WERE TAUGHT IN YOUR RESIDENCY?

8.         DO YOU AGREE THAT THE STANDARD OF CARE IN WASHINGTON IS THE SAME AS THE STANDARD OF CARE TAUGHT IN RESIDENCY AND BY BOARD CERTIFICATION?

I.          PERSONAL KNOWLEDGE OF THE PLAINTIFF

1.         HAVE YOU EVER EXAMINED THE PLAINTIFF?

2.         HAVE YOU EVER MET OR TALKED WITH THE PLAINTIFF?

3.         HAVE YOU EVER DISCUSSED THIS CASE WITH THE PLAINTIFF’S TREATING DOCTOR?

4.         HAVE YOU EVER DISCUSSED THIS CASE WITH THE PLAINTIFF’S EXPERTS?

(1)        KNOW PLAINTIFF’S EXPERTS? EXPLAIN

(2)    ARE THEY QUALIFIED TO TREAT THIS PATIENT?

J           EXPERT FILE CONTENTS

1.         SHOW ME ALL WORK NOTES, MEMOS OR REPORTS CREATED.

(1)        EXAMINE FILE: “IS THIS YOUR COMPLETE FILE?”

K.        RECORD KEEPING AND HOSPITAL DUTIES

1.         DOES THE HOSPITAL YOU PRACTICE IN HAVE A REGULAR MEDICAL STAFF MEETING?

2.         HOW DO MEDICAL STAFF MEETINGS DIFFER FROM THE PEER REVIEW COMMITTEE MEETINGS?

3.         IS THERE A DISCUSSION OF CASES WHERE DOCTORS MAY HAVE DEPARTED FROM THE STANDARD OF CLINICAL PRACTICE AT THE REGULAR MEDICAL STAFF MEETING?

4.         IS IT NECESSARY FOR YOU TO FOLLOW THE POLICIES, RULES AND PROCEDURES OF THE HOSPITAL AND MEDICAL STAFF IN ORDER TO KEEP YOUR MEDICAL PRIVILEGES AT THE HOSPITAL.

5.         HOW IMPORTANT IS ACCURATE RECORD KEEPING BY DOCTORS AND NURSES?

6.         EXPLAIN SIGNIFICANCE OF TIME ENTRIES.

7.         FIND INACCURACIES IN RECORDS – MISTAKES – CHANGES

L.         FACTS

1.         WHAT IS YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF THE BASIC AND SIGNIFICANT FACTS IN THIS CASE?

M.        DEFINITIONS

1.         WHAT IS YOUR UNDERSTANDING AS TO THE DEFINITION OF:

(1)        “MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE”?

(2)        “STANDARD OF CARE”

(3)        “REASONABLE MEDICAL CERTAINTY”

N.        OPINIONS REACHED IN THIS CASE

1.         WHAT OPINIONS HAVE YOU REACHED IN THIS CASE WHICH YOU INTEND TO EXPRESS AT THE TIME OF TRIAL?

2.         WHAT POSSIBLE EXPLANATIONS OR CONCLUSIONS DID YOU CONSIDER BUT REJECT? WHY? EXPLAIN FULLY?

3.         WHY DID YOU ARRIVE AT THE OPINIONS YOU HAVE IN THIS CASE?

O.        PROXIMATE CAUSE

1.         IN YOUR OPINION, WHAT IS THE CAUSE OF THE PLAINTIFF’S INJURIES?

2.         DO YOU HAVE AN OPINION WHETHER A DEPARTURE FROM MEDICAL CARE APPROXIMATELY CAUSED THE PLAINTIFF’S INJURIES?

P.         INFORMED CONSENT ISSUE

1.         OPINION AS TO NATURE OF ADVICE THAT SHOULD BE GIVEN REGARDING:

2.         NATURE OF PROPOSED TREATMENT.

3.         RISKS INVOLVED – CHANCE OF RISK.

4.         ANTICIPATED RESULT –  CHANCE OF SUCCESS.

5.         REASON FOR RECOMMENDED TREATMENT.

6.         UNDERSTANDING AS TO ADVICE ACTUALLY GIVEN REGARDING EACH OF ABOVE.

7.         UNDERSTANDING AS TO PATIENTS REACTION TO ADVICE GIVEN.

Q.        “ERROR OF JUDGMENT” – WPI INSTRUCTION 105.08

1.         FIND ANY EVIDENCE OF AN “ERROR OF JUDGMENT” ON THE PART OF DEFENDANT                                                     

(1)        IF SO, EXPLAIN IN DETAIL

R.        LIMITING AREA OF EXPERT TESTIMONY

1.         AREAS WITNESS WILL DEFER TO ANOTHER EXPERT UPON.

2.         AREAS IN WHICH HE WILL NOT GIVE AN OPINION,

3.         DAMAGES:   DOES THE WITNESS HAVE OPINIONS ON FOLLOWING POINTS?

(1)        Life Expectancy

(a)        IF AFFECTED, WHAT WAS THE LIFE EXPECTANCY BEFORE THIS EVENT & NOW

(b)        WHY?

(c)        ARTICLES RELIED UPON

(2)        Prognosis

(a)        WHAT KIND OF LONG-TERM AFFECTS ARE EXPECTED WITH THIS KIND OF INJURY WHY?

(3)        Cost of Future Care:

(a)        COST OF FUTURE CARE. WHY?

(4)        Liability:

(a)        WHY OUR EXPERT’S ARE WRONG IN THEIR CONCLUSIONS

(b)        HOW THIS COULD HAVE BEEN AVOIDED?

(5)        Res Ipsa concept:

(1)        HOW COMMON IS THIS OCCURRENCE?

(2         HOW MANY TIMES HAS WITNESS PERSONALLY EXPERIENCED OR SEEN THIS?

(3)        WHERE REASONABLE CARE EXERCISED YOU DON’T NORMALLY EXPECT THIS RESULT?

S.         CONCLUSION

1.         HAVE YOU TOLD US ALL OPINIONS YOU HAVE REACHED IN THIS CASE YOU INTEND TO TESTIFY TO AT TRIAL?

Note:  CR 26 (and discovery order) give us right to know

(1) opinions, (2) grounds, (3) facts relied upon.  To avoid surprise we are entitled to have this information provided.  Any opinions not disclosed will be objected to at trial for failure of defense attorney to make full disclosure when asked to at this deposition.

2.         HAVE YOU TOLD US FULLY THE REASONS WHY YOU HAVE FORMED THESE OPINIONS?

3.         IS THERE ANY OTHER INFORMATION YOU NEED OR WORK OF ANY KIND YOU FEEL SHOULD BE DONE   IN CONNECTION WITH THESE OPINIONS? WHAT? EXPLAIN FULLY

(1)        ANY RESEARCH, INVESTIGATION, OR TESTING OF ANY KIND YOU FEEL WOULD BE HELPFUL WHICH HASN’T BEEN DONE?

Note:   We expect to be immediately advised of any such action and have right to depose in advance of trial.

4.         IS THERE ANYTHING WE HAVE TALKED ABOUT YOU WOULD LIKE TO EXPLAIN FOR ANY REASON? ANY QUESTIONS YOU WANT ME TO REPEAT FOR ANY REASON?

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