Sunday, November 24, 2013

Ingraham v. United States case brief

Ingraham v. United States case brief summary
808 F.2d 1075 (5th Cir. 1987)


CASE SYNOPSIS
Defendant government appealed a judgment of the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas, which ruled in favor of plaintiff patients in their suits under the Federal Tort Claims Act for severe injuries caused by the negligence of government physicians and denied defendant's motion to amend the judgment.

CASE FACTS
Plaintiff patients were severely injured by the negligence of defendant government's physicians. Plaintiffs filed suit and were awarded millions of dollars. Defendant filed a motion to amend the judgment under Fed. R. Civ. P. 59, which was denied. Three months later, defendant filed a pleading entitled motion for reconsideration and advanced Tex. Rev. Civ. Stat. Ann. art. 4590i, § 11.02(a), which set a cap on damages against a physician or health care provider, as grounds for a reduction in the amount of the awards. The motion was denied. Defendant appealed the judgment and the denial of the motion to amend, but did not appeal the denial of the motion for reconsideration.

DISCUSSION
The appellate court affirmed because § 11.02(a) was an affirmative defense that had been waived by defendant due to its failure to timely plead the defense, the issues raised in the motion for reconsideration were not before the appellate court, and the damage awards were not excessive.

CONCLUSION
The appellate court affirmed the judgment in favor of plaintiff patients and the denial of defendant government's motion to amend the judgment.


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