Congratulations to David Field in obtaining a defense verdict in a jury trial that took place in November 2016 in Indianapolis, Indiana. It was medical malpractice claim wherein plaintiff was alleging that her oncologist failed to work-up or otherwise refer her to a urologist following an incidental finding of an enlarged bladder on a PET scan. Although the oncologist successfully cured her cancer, plaintiff filed suit years later claiming the oncologist caused her kidney failure even though she was under the care of a urologist within months of the PET scan and chose not to return to the urologist for follow-up. After 5 days of testimony, the jury returned a verdict in favor of the defense.
All the legal counsel in the world won't make a difference if your law firm is unable to take your case to court. At Schultz & Pogue, we know how to try cases. In fact, we've earned the business of our clients by our willingness to take your case to trial. With a practice focused on civil litigation, we will provide you with effective, efficient and responsive representation to meet your legal needs. Take some time and get to know us and learn more about the way we work and the impact we've made on our clients, our industry and our community. Give us a call and we'll get working on your case.
Peter H. Pogue teamed with noted plaintiff's medical malpractice trial attorney Kathy A. Lee to present at an ICLEF seminar on closing arguments in medical malpractice cases. Mr. Pogue presented tips on closing and a mock closing argument for the defendant doctor in an agreed upon fact pattern. Ms. Lee presented for the plaintiff. The seminar was part of the ICLEF Master's Series on litigation.
Tom Schultz was recently asked by the Defense Trial Counsel of Indiana (DTCI) to appear before the Committee on Courts of the Indiana House of Representatives to testify in support of House Bill 1036. The Bill has been offered as a solution on how Marion County judges are selected. The current system was declared unconstitutional by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals and Indiana has until 2018 in which to develop a new system. House Bill 1036 establishes a 14 member Marion County judicial selection committee as a key element of selecting new judges. This is the second year in a row that Mr. Schultz has been asked to speak on behalf of DTCI concerning judicial selection.
Michael F. Mullen was recently published in Volume XII of the Indiana Civil Litigation Review, an annual journal distributed to members of the Defense Trial Counsel of Indiana. The article analyzed the recent SCI Propane holding and its impact on medical malpractice claims. Mr. Mullen’s article, Why Med Mal Plaintiffs Asserting General Wrongful Death Claims Will Fail to Recover Attorneys’ Fees: Applying SCI Propane to the Indiana Medical Malpractice Act, is available to DTCI members.
Tom Schultz received the 2015 Diplomat Award by the Defense Trial Counsel of Indiana at its Annual Meeting. The Diplomat Award was presented: "For exceptional contributions to the representation of clients in the defense of litigation matters." Schultz is a past president of DTCI and a former recipient of its Defense Lawyer of The Year Award.
Jon M. Pinnick recently (October 20, 2015) served as a Faculty Member for an Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum on Indiana Evidence, presenting on Evidentiary Trial Objections in Indianapolis, Indiana to and for trial attorneys from across the State of Indiana.
Jon M. Pinnick recently testified for The Indiana General Assembly Interim Study Committee on the Medical Malpractice Act. Mr. Pinnick’s testimony was focused on the Medical Review Panel process in Indiana, including its history, current logistics, and the fact that it works in its current form and serves a valuable purpose for patients and health care providers alike. Mr. Pinnick testified that in spite of some claims by the plaintiff’s bar, the medical review panel process is not “broken”. Moreover, the Medical Malpractice Act includes very specific legislation on time requirements and the like which, if actually requested or required by either the plaintiff or the defense, would shorted the perceived delays in a case progressing through the medical review panel process.
Tom Schultz presented in September to the North Dakota Defense Lawyers Association in Bismark, North Dakota. The presentation focused on preparing and delivering closing arguments in civil litigation for the defense. Tom continues to remain active in presenting to State and local defense bar organizations.
Congratulations to Tom Schultz on being elected to serve on the Board of Directors of the Carmel Swim Club in Carmel, Indiana. The Carmel Swim Club is the top swim club in the State of Indiana, and one of the top club teams in the United States. This represents the second time Tom has been elected to serve on the Board of Directors for the Carmel Swim Club.
Congratulations to Tom Schultz and Angela Della Rocco in obtaining a defense verdict in a jury trial that recently took place in Terre Haute, Indiana. It was a premises liability case that presented with damaging testimony against the client, and an indemnity claim asserted by the landlord. Plaintiff suffered significant injury to his shoulder resulting in surgery and medical bills in excess of $60,000.00. The matter was tried over 3 days in Vigo County Superior Court, and the jury returned its verdict in forty minutes. Vigo County is the 26th different County in Indiana in which Tom Schultz has had a jury trial.
On May 13, 2015, Attorney Jon M. Pinnick presented a continuing legal education program for the Indianapolis Bar Association. The progarm was part of the Indy Bar's Litigation Trial Skills Series and focused on In-Trial Motions. A representative of the Plaintiff's bar also participated, and Jon presented In-Trial Motions from the defense perspective.
Congratulations to Tom Schultz who recently obtained a defense verdict in an underinsured motorist case tried in Lawrence Circuit Court in Southern Indiana in April 2015. The case involved a rear-end collision in which plaintiff claimed over $50,000.00 in medical bills. A qualified settlement offer of $30,000.00 was previously been made prior to trial by jury. This marked the 60th jury trial for Tom and the 24th different county in the State of Indiana in which he has tried a case to a jury. We congratulate Tom on his acheivement and another defense verdict.
Congratulations to Jon Pinnick. Represented Board Certified Emergency Department Physican and his Emergency Department Group. Case involved a 26 year old male who presented to our emergency department with history of chest pain and discomfort, shortness of breath, and headache. He had other generalized complaints as well. ED physician conducted complete and thorough examination and work up, including EKGs, cardiac enzymes and chest x-ray. All were essentially within normal limits, except for some mild cardiomegaly. Ultimately, ED physician appropriately diagnosed patient with pleuritic chest pain due to URI and jaw pain due to existing TMJ syndrome and discharged him with appropriate follow up instructions. 8 days later this patient re-presented to same ED, but this time had complaints of almost passing out three times, a one hour coughing fit, shortness of breath, and a popping sensation to back of neck while in the shower just prior to presentation. He was admitted. There was an incidental finding of an ascending aortic arch dissecting aneurysm. He was taken to surgery and died in the OR after an approximate 14 hour surgery. Plaintiff Estate claimed our clients failed to timely diagnose this aneurysm and caused the death of the 26 year old. Plaintiff hired two experts. We hired expert ED physician and expert Cardiothoracic Surgeon, both of whom testified persuasively at trial. DEFENSE verdict in Marion Superior Court.
January 2015: Congratulations to Jon Pinnick and Michael Mullen. Infant brought to ED by parents with complaints of fever, cough and stridor with difficult breathing. ED physician institutes appropriate steroids and breathing treatment. ED physician appropriately orders lateral x-ray of neck, and he results confirmed the ED physician’s suspicion of epiglottitis. ED physician secures STAT ENT consult and infant is emergency taken to the OR. Successfully obtained dismissal of ED physician pre-panel.
January 2015: Congratulations to Jon Pinnick. We represented Fort Wayne Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. W in claim before a medical review panel. Plaintiffs claimed Dr. W negligently performed total hip arthroplasty. In fact, Dr. W. performed the total hip arthroplasty appropriately. He obtained appropriate informed consent and performed the procedure with standard technique. We successfully obtained dismissal of claim, with prejudice, before the matter even proceeded to an Indiana Medical Review Panel.
November 2014: Congratulations to Jon Pinnick and Julia Condict. We defended Board Certified OB/GYN in Lafayette, Indiana. Dr. H performed da Vinci trachelectomy and bilateral salpingo-oopherectomy and lysis of adhesions. Plaintiff claimed Dr. H. negligently injured her bladder and rectum. We hired well respected Indianapolis OB/GYN who concluded Dr. H. had met the applicable standard of care. Medical Review Panel found unanimously in favor of Dr. H. Despite panel opinion, plaintiff secured expert from east coast. At the final pre-trial conference—one week prior to scheduled 4 day jury trial—Tippecanoe Superior Court granted our motion to dismiss.
Congratulations to Partner David G. Field in obtaining a defense verdict in December 2014 in a medical malpractice jury trial in the Madison County Superior Court in Anderson, Indiana. David represented an emergency medicine physician in a claim in which the plaintiff argued that due to the failure to perform an adequate neurological exam, the patient’s underlying spinal cord injury went undiagnosed and the patient suffered a subsequent permanent quadriparetic injury following a fall he experienced after his discharge. After six days of testimony, the jury returned a verdict in favor of the defense.
Attorney Charley Smith presented a continuing legal education seminar on determining damages for the Indianapolis Bar Association’s Litigation Section on October 28, 2014. The seminar focused on tools available for determining damages, methods for determining damages, and how to keep clients apprised of any changes in the assessment of damages throughout the litigation. Charley also serves on the Executive Committee of the Indy Bar Association's Litigation Section.
Peter H. Pogue, a Principal Partner of Schultz & Pogue, LLP, recently obtained a defense verdict on behalf of a cardiologist in a heart attack resulting in death case tried to a jury in Danville, Hendricks County, Indiana. The decedent, a 47 year old male, presented to the Emergency Room complaining of chest pain, shortness of breath on exertion, sweating, dizziness, nausea, and vomiting, which had been occurring on and off for 2 days prior to presentation. The decedent had also presented on two prior occasions to the ER in the previous 6 weeks with similar complaints.
An EKG and cardiac markers were normal in the ER. However, due to the decedent’s complaints of chest pain, the decedent was hospitalized for further cardiology evaluation for chest pain. The defendant cardiologist performed a cardiology workup for the chest pain, inclusive of an exercise treadmill test with echocardiography. The decedent exercised greater than 10 METS on the treadmill, and the cardiologist believed the treadmill EKG and echocardiogram were normal. Two sets of additional cardiac markers were run showing elevated Troponin of .3 and .4, after the initial Troponin was normal at .2. Based on the normal exercise treadmill EKG and echocardiogram, the defendant cardiologist released the decedent and instructed him to follow-up in one week in the cardiologist’s office.
The decedent followed up with the cardiologist’s practice in one week. The decedent was seen by one of the cardiologist’s partners who believed the decedent had GERD and released the decedent to be followed by the decedent’s primary care physician. Eight days later the decedent had an acute myocardial infarction at home. He could not be resuscitated. The autopsy showed a 90% occlusion of the LAD Artery totally occluded by thrombus.
An Indiana Medical Review Panel consisting of 3 cardiologists found that the defendant cardiologist had breached the standard of care and caused the decedent’s death. The Panel relied on the abnormal Troponin level at discharge, and believed the EKG showed ST depression with the echocardiogram showing abnormal wall motion necessitating a heart catheterization. At trial, Peter called an expert witness cardiologist who testified that the defendant cardiologist had appropriately risk stratified the decedent as a low to moderate risk patient based on the decedent’s exercise tolerance, and that the EKG and echocardiogram were normal. The defense expert testified that the decedent could be released and followed with medications.
After 30 minutes of deliberations, the jury returned a defense verdict in favor of the cardiologist.
Principal Partner Tom Schultz received a jury verdict this summer in an underinsured motorist case that was tried in Tippecanoe County, Indiana. The case involved a motor vehicle accident with clear liability for the defense. The Plaintiff underwent a cervical spine disk fusion as well as shoulder surgery. Medical bills were in excess of $60,000, and a lost wage claim was also asserted. While the jury returned a six-figure verdict for the Plaintiff, after applying set-off rights that were properly perfected by the defense, the net to Plaintiff was only $10,000. This figure was less than what the defense offered during pre-trial alternative dispute resolution, and was also significantly below Plaintiff's last demand prior to trial.