Plaintiff Dismisses When Defense Refuses To Back Down

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Two of Fulcher Hagler LLP’s partners, Jim Purcell and Andy Holliday, recently obtained a complete dismissal for one of the firm’s physician clients in a professional liability claim perched on the brink of trial.  The wrongful death claim arose in a rural South Carolina city where the firm’s client was working in an emergency room.  A patient arrived to the hospital late one evening with abdominal pain.  The emergency room physician evaluated the patient, consulted with appropriate specialists, ordered important tests, and insured the patient was admitted to the hospital.  The following day, the patient underwent major surgery to correct a perforated duodenal ulcer.  After undergoing a surgery, the patient’s condition worsened and, unfortunately, he passed away.  The patient’s widow filed suit against several defendants.  The plaintiff was represented by seasoned trial lawyers from Greenville, South Carolina.  Defended by Fulcher Hagler LLP, the emergency room physician stood by his care and treatment of the patient and would not yield to claims that were without merit.

While many of the defendants settled out of the case, the Fulcher firm aggressively defended its client for more than two years.  The case involved more than a dozen expert witnesses from states all over the Eastern half of the United States.  The plaintiff’s family members were life-long residents of the rural South Carolina city where the suit was pending, and the emergency room physician had since moved to Georgia.  Nonetheless, the ER physician firmly believed his care was appropriate, mounted a solid defense to the allegations, and was ready to take the case to trial.  Prior to trial, all other defendants were dismissed from the case, and the ER physician was the sole remaining defendant.

As trial approached, it became evident that the ER physician and his lawyers would not capitulate to the plaintiff’s demands.  Finally, at the eleventh hour, the plaintiff wisely chose to dismiss her lawsuit.   While our client learned that being the target of a lawsuit when you’ve done nothing wrong can be difficult and frustrating, it’s nothing compared to having the wrong lawyer on your side.  The trial team makes all the difference.