Sunday, November 24, 2013

Coates v. AC & S, Inc. case brief

Coates v. AC & S, Inc. case brief summary
133 F.R.D. 109 (E.D. La. 1990)

Plaintiff, a relative of decedent, sought to compel discovery of experts consulted by defendant corporation and to depose these experts or to obtain copies of any written reports, including the results of all tests made and all conclusions of these experts concerning the decedent's tissue samples that were studied by the experts.


  • The corporation asserted that, under Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(b)(4)(B), it was not required to disclose the opinions of experts that would not testify at trial. 
  • The court rejected the corporation's contention, finding that exceptional circumstances were present that required disclosure of the expert opinions because the decedent's relative could not obtain expert opinion concerning the decedent's tissue samples by any other means. 
  • The court ruled that both parties had a right to the type of information set forth in Fed. R. Civ. P. 35(b) because a pathologist's examination of tissue samples taken from the body of a person who was deceased was sufficiently analogous to an examination under the rule. 
  • The court held that the decedent's relative was entitled to discovery of the results of the expert's review of the tissue samples because the fact that discovery was conducted by the sending of tissue samples rather than by autopsy did not dictate whether the findings of the doctors participating should be revealed.
The court ordered the corporation to disclose it's experts' findings to the decedent's relative. The court held that under Fed. R. Civ. P. 35(b) the relative was entitled to discovery because there was no distinction between an autopsy performed on the decedent and the review of tissue samples of the decedent that were taken previously.

Recommended Supplements for Civil Procedure

No comments:

Post a Comment