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Ball v. Allied Physicians Group, LLC -- instructive case re submission of future medical damages

Case addressing evidentiary and instructional issues associated with submission of issue of future medical damages.  "When using evidence of future medical consequences to establish the value of a present injury, it is not necessary to establish the future consequences are reasonably certain to occur; rather, the plaintiff must show merely that there is an increased risk of suffering possible future consequences."  However, in this case, "by contrast, where a plaintiff seeks to recover the medical costs associated with a future secondary injury that has not yet occurred, the plaintiff must prove the future injury itself is reasonably certain to occur."

Court summary:

Allied Physicians Group, L.L.C., d/b/a Breakthrough Pain Relief and Catherine Doty, M.D. appeal from the trial court’s entry of judgment upon a jury verdict in favor of Claudia Ball in her petition for damages.


Division Three Holds: The trial court erred in submitting the issue of future medical damages to the jury because it was not supported by sufficient evidence. The trial court did not abuse its discretion in excluding evidence of a second needle breakage; did not err in submitting the informed-consent issue to the jury; and did not plainly err in submitting to the jury the verdict directing instruction that contained a typographical error.

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About this Author

Laura A. Bentele, Litigation Attorney, Armstrong Teasdale, Law firm

Laura Bentele is an associate attorney in the Litigation group practicing in the areas of complex commercial litigation and white collar criminal defense. To achieve optimal outcomes, Laura anticipates clients’ strategic and practical business considerations. Committed to effective case management, she is versed in all phases of discovery, trial preparation and negotiation of settlements with opposing counsel. Laura strives to maintain open avenues of communication to ensure that clients receive representation that meets their business needs.