Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Robins v. Garg case brief

Robins v. Garg case brief summary
741 N.W.2d 49 (2007)

Plaintiff personal representative challenged a decision from the Oakland Circuit Court (Michigan), which granted summary disposition in favor of defendant doctor. The decision was reversed on appeal, but the Michigan Supreme Court vacated that opinion, and remanded to the court of appeals the case for reconsideration.


The patient, who was experiencing back and chest pain, went into cardiac arrest at the doctor's office and later died. The representative filed a medical malpractice action.


  • The trial court struck an expert affidavit and granted a motion for summary disposition filed by the doctor. 
  • The decision was reversed and remanded, but the Michigan Supreme Court vacated that decision. 
  • In reversing the case again, the appellate court held that the affidavit was improperly stricken under MCL 600.2912a(1)(a). 
  • The expert stated that he was familiar with the standard of care for an area similar to the one here. 
  • Next, a doctor practicing general medicine was not a specialist under Woodard. 
  • Therefore, MCL 600.2169(1)(c) applied here. 
  • Further, a board certified family practitioner was qualified to testify against a general practitioner, as long as MCL 600.2169(1)(c)(i) or (ii) was also satisfied. 
  • Here, the expert was engaged in the general practice medicine in Florida, as a family practitioner, for the year preceding the date of the alleged malpractice. 
  • Finally, there were genuine issues of material fact on the question of causation based on an expert's testimony regarding the cause of death.

The decision of the trial court was reversed, and the case was remanded for further proceedings.

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