Monday, March 15, 2010

Court reviews trial court's rulings on the sufficiency of an amended complaint and its dismissal of wrongful death and loss of consortium claims in a medical malpractice case.


This is a medical malpractice case. Appellant filed suit against Appellee Hospital after Appellant's decedent suffered several falls and a broken hip while a patient at Appellee Hospital.

The trial court granted Appellee Hospital's Tenn. R. Civ. P. 12.02(6) motion, thereby dismissing Appellant's amended complaint. Specifically, the trial court held: (1) that the amended complaint was ineffective to give notice to Appellee Hospital because it did not reference the date(s) of decedent's falls, (2) that the medical malpractice claim and hedonic damages of the widow arising therefrom were dismissed by previous orders of the court, and (3) that the proof did not support the averments made in the amended complaint.

After review, we conclude: (1) that the amended complaint is sufficiently specific to satisfy Tenn. R. Civ. P. 8, and to state a claim for medical malpractice against the Appellee Hospital, (2) that the previous orders of the trial court only dismissed the wrongful death claims and widow's loss of consortium claims arising therefrom, and not the medical malpractice claims, and (3) that the trial court reviewed matters outside the pleadings so as to trigger summary judgment analysis under Tenn. R. Civ. P. 12.03, and (4) that there are disputes of material fact in this case so as to necessitate a full evidentiary hearing on the medical malpractice claim. Reversed and remanded for an evidentiary hearing on the medical malpractice claim against Appellee Hospital and on the widow's loss of consortium claims arising from the alleged medical malpractice.

Opinion may be found at:

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