Medical Malpractice: A How to Guide (Archived Video Stream) 

Mar. 29, 2012
Toronto Online


This is the archived version of a program presented on March 29, 2012.  This will not become available until 2 weeks after the orginal program date.  To order this format please click on the "REGISTER NOW" button.   

Tips and strategies from senior defence and plaintiff medical malpractice litigators on how to effectively and efficiently run a medical malpractice case.  Learning how to screen claimants, investigate potential cases and proceeding through litigation with effective experts and discovery evidence while managing the expectations of your client. 

New Feature:    Luncheon Keynote Address by Brian Devlin, Q.C.
Improving Access to Justice in Medical Malpractice Claims

Program sponsored by: CanInc Experts

Program Chairs:

Richard Halpern, Thomson, Rogers
Barbara MacFarlane, Torkin Manes LLP

9:00 am

Introductory Remarks

9:05 am 

Screening Claimants

  • Which retainers to accept
  • Seeing the potential in a claim
  • Assessing damages, risk and costs
  • Liability complications
  • Retainers and contingency fee arrangements
  • How can you do a good job weeding out the good from the bad?

Moderator: The Honourable Coulter A. A. Osborne, Neeson Arbitration
Panel: Donald Dow, Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP – Ottawa
Peter G. Hagen, Soloway Wright LLP – Ottawa
Robert Somerleigh, Erickson & Partners – Thunder Bay

9:25 am

Investigations: Medical Records

  • What records are needed to adequately investigate a medical malpractice case
  • How to get, understand, read and evaluate them
  • How to identify potential defendants and know what further information may be available

Moderator:The Honourable Coulter A. A. Osborne
Panel: Duncan M. Embury, Torkin Manes LLP
John J. Morris, Borden Ladner Gervais LLP

9:45 am

Retaining Experts

  • When to retain experts, what experts are needed, how many to retain and how to instruct an expert
  • Communications with experts: written and verbal reports
  • Paying the expert and the use of experts at trial including the impact of the new Rules

Moderator: The Honourable Coulter A. A. Osborne
Panel: Peter Kryworuk, Lerners LLP – London
Barbara Legate, Legate Personal Injury Lawyers – London
Jerome R. Morse, Adair Morse LLP
Michael Royce, Lenczner Slaght Royce Smith Griffin LLP

10:30 am


10:50 am

Cost of Litigation

  • The cost of litigation from both sides
  • Do medical malpractice cases cost more?
  • How to run an efficient case
  • Factors that can add to costs
  • Avoiding unnecessary costs
  • Evaluating the case as the matter proceeds and re-assessing costs at various stages
  • How to streamline cases

Moderator:The Honourable Coulter A. A. Osborne
Panel: Duncan Embury
Michael Royce

11:10 am

Who To Sue: Who Are The Proper Parties?

  • Physicians, other health care practitioners and vicarious liability
  • Should parties be added just to obtain discovery evidence? 
  • What are the advantages or disadvantages of joining everyone in the lawsuit?
  • How does the limitation period affect who gets added?

Moderator: The Honourable Coulter A. A. Osborne
Panel: Gayle T. Brock, Brock Medical Malpractice Law PC – Barrie
Donald Dow
John Morris

11:30 am

Medical Research: Tips And Techniques

  • Explore how lawyers can get up to speed on the medicine from the beginning of the case
  • How important is the research?
  • Learn how to identify the medical issues and know the medicine
  • Learn sources for research: experts, internet, leading texts and journals.
  • When should it be done and how does proper research affect the retention of experts, the conduct of discovery, pre-trial and trial?

Moderator: Richard Halpern
Panel: Peter Kryworuk
Barbara Legate
Jerome R. Morse

12:00 pm

12:30 pm

Lunch (provided)

 Luncheon Keynote Address by Brian Devlin, Q.C.
Improving Access to Justice in Medical Malpractice Claims

1:00 pm

Discovery: Obtaining Full and Effective Disclosure

  • How to optimize the discovery process from both sides
  • How to obtain full disclosure and make effective use of discovery: lawyer preparation, documentary production (finding the smoking gun), preparing witnesses (including dealing with knowledgeable expert parties), opinion evidence, cross-examination, objections and getting a good transcript

Moderator: Richard Halpern
Panel: Paul M. Mann
Jerome R. Morse
Peter Kryworuk
William D. Black, McCarthy Tétrault LLP

1:45 pm

Post-Discovery: Preparation for Pre-Trial and Trial
Discussion on what to do once discoveries are done:  correcting answers; seeking further opinions on the discovery evidence; narrow the issues:  Can parties be let out of the action?; preparing for pre-trial; re-evaluating the merits; assessing the impact of the discovery evidence on the potential outcome; ask your experts the tough questions; being fully prepared.
Moderator: Richard Halpern
Panel: Peter G. Hagen
William D. Black
Robert Somerleigh

2:30 pm

Managing Clients’ Expectations
How to deal with the challenges of managing client’s expectations at each stage of the proceedings. Managing expectations in terms of potential outcomes; challenges in getting clients to understand the complex medical and legal issues. Appreciating the expectations of both the defence and the plaintiff.  What does the CMPA expect from their counsel?  What things plaintiff’s counsel can do to affect the defence approach. 
Moderator: Richard Halpern
Panel: Barbara Legate
Margaret A. Ross, Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP – Ottawa

3:00 pm

Question Period

3:30 pm

Program Concludes

The Program Chairs would like to thank the Holland Group for their leadership in developing this program and providing speakers.


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