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Miguel Gonzalez, Jr., A Minor, By and Through His Guardian Ad v. United States of America

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


June 7, 2011

MIGUEL GONZALEZ, JR., A MINOR, BY AND THROUGH HIS GUARDIAN AD LITEM, MARIA GONZALEZ, MARIA GONZALEZ AND MIGUEL GONZALEZ, PLAINTIFFS,
v.
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, GURVIR KHURANA, M.D.; KERN MEDICAL CENTER; AND DOES 1 THROUGH 300, INCLUSIVE,
DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Sheila K. Oberto United States Magistrate Judge

RENEWED JOINT STIPULATION OF THE PARTIES TO CONTINUE TRIAL DATE; PRE-TRIAL CONFERENCE AND DEADLINE TO COMPLETE EXPERT DISCOVERY SO THAT THE PARTIES MAY ATTEND PRIVATE MEDIATION;

ORDER Filed concurrently with Declaration of Thomas E. Donahue In Support Thereof

TO THE HONORABLE COURT:

All parties in this action, by and through their counsel of record, hereby agree and stipulate as follows:

1. This is a complex medical malpractice case involving severe and permanent brain injury to 3 1/2 year old Miguel Gonzalez, Jr. He is permanently and completely disabled and will require round the clock care for the remainder of his life.

Maria Gonzalez, Miguel Gonzalez, Jr.'s mother, has a claim for medical negligence and negligent infliction of emotional distress. Miguel Gonzalez, Miguel Gonzalez, Jr.'s father, has a claim for negligent infliction of emotional distress and loss of consortium. Plaintiffs allege that Defendants were negligent in the management of the labor and delivery in this case, in that they failed to recognize fetal distress before delivery and were negligent in conducting a vaginal delivery that was not consented to. Miguel Gonzalez, Jr. requires round the clock care for the remainder of his life.

Plaintiffs allege future medical care needs in excess of $10,000,000.

2. Defendants deny theses allegations.

3. Substantial discovery has been completed in this matter. Extensive fact written discovery has been completed and over 19 percipient depositions have been completed. The parties have disclosed and submitted voluminous expert and rebuttal expert reports. Plaintiffs designated 9 experts located throughout the country in various specialties including obstetrics-gynecology, maternal-fetal medicine, pediatric neurology, pediatric neuroradiology, neonatal perinatal, nursing, physical medicine and rehabilitation, life care planning, and an economist. Defendants designated 13 experts in total and submitted rebuttal expert reports. Miguel Gonzalez, Jr. underwent multiple Independent Medical Examinations.

4. Plaintiffs and defendants United States of America and the County of Kern have all agreed to attend a full day of private mediation. All parties have agreed to and selected Jay Horton of Judicate West to mediate this case. Mr. Horton is extremely experienced and familiar with mediating birth-injury cases. Once the parties agreed to Mr. Horton, they immediately inquired as to his availability. However, Mr. Horton's schedule is extremely impacted and the next date he has available and that all parties and their counsel are available is August 29, 2011.

5. The parties are ordered to complete expert discovery and depositions no later than July 11, 2011.

6. The non-dispositive motion filing deadline is July 13, 2011.

7. The dispositive motion filing deadline is July 22, 2011.

8. The Pre-Trial Conference is set for September 15, 2011 at 8:30 a.m. in Courtroom 4/LJO.

9. The Trial is scheduled for October 31, 2011 at 8:30 a.m. in Courtroom 4/LJO and will last approximately 15-20 days. Plaintiffs and Defendants County of Kern and Dr. Khurana have demanded a jury trial. Defendant United States of America disputes that the parties are entitled to a jury trial.

10. The parties request and submit that the Trial, Pre-Trial Conference and the corresponding pre-trial deadlines, including the deadline for completion of expert discovery and the deadline for filing non-dispositive motions and dispositive motions be continued for approximately five months. The parties submit that this request is being made for good cause so as to allow the parties time to meaningfully explore mediation prior to extensive expert discovery depositions and pre-trial disclosures.

There are over 22 experts to be deposed in this matter and before the costs and expense go into these depositions, the parties wish to explore mediation. Further, due to the fact that Mr. Horton is not available for mediation until August 29, 2011, the parties wish to explore meaningful mediation prior to the time for pre-trial disclosures and filing dispositive motions.

11. There have been no prior requests for a trial continuance in this matter.

12. The parties hereby stipulate and request as follows:

a. The cut-off for expert discovery, currently set to be completed by July 11, 2011, shall be continued until February 17, 2012;

b. The non-dispositive motion filing deadline, currently set for July 13, 2011, shall be continued until February 22, 2012;

c. The dispositive motion filing deadline, currently set for July 22, 2011, shall be continued to March 2, 2012;

d. The Pre-Trial Conference currently set for September 15, 2011 at 8:30 a.m. in Courtroom 4/LJO, shall be continued until June 14, 2012;

e. The Trial, currently scheduled for October 31, 2011, shall be continued until August 6, 2012.

13. The execution and return of this Stipulation may be by facsimile transmission in lieu of an original.

IT IS SO STIPULATED.

UNITED STATES ATTORNEY Dated: June 6, 2011 By: Jason Ehrlinspiel Attorneys for Defendant United States of America LEBEAU THELEN, LLP Dated: June 6, 2011 By: Dennis R. Thelen, Esq. Attorneys for Defendant Gurvir Khurana, M.D. PATTERSON, LOCKWOOD, HARRIS, JURICH & HILLYER, LLP Dated: June 6, 2011 By John A. Jurich Attorneys for Defendant County of Kern (erroneously sued as Kern Medical Center) COUNTY COUNSEL OF THE COUNTY OF KERN, STATE OF CALIFORNIA Dated: June 6, 2011 By: Jennifer E. Zahry Attorneys for Defendant County of Kern (erroneously sued as Kern Medical Center) DONAHUE & HORROW, LLP Dated: June 6, 2011 By Thomas E. Donahue Nichole D. Podgurski Attorneys for Plaintiffs Miguel Gonzales, Jr., a minor, by and through his guardian ad litem, Maria Gonzalez, Maria Gonzalez, and Miguel Gonzalez

IT IS SO ORDERED.

DEAC_Signature-END:

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20110607

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