Wrongful Death Case Reversed

Posted on Mar 4th, 2014 in Uncategorized

When Mattie Foster died, her husband decided to give his power of attorney to his grand-nephew. The grand-nephew then filed a medical malpractice lawsuit, Foster v. St. Joseph Hospital, 158 S.W.3d 418 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2004), within a year but erroneously named himself as the plaintiff.

Under Tennessee’s wrongful death statute, a claim for wrongful death must come from the decedent’s personal representative or surviving spouse. Because the grand-nephew was not the decedent’s representative or spouse, the suit was not valid. The grand-nephew then voluntarily dismissed the suit and re-filed listing the decedent’s husband as the plaintiff.

The new claim was filed two years after the decedent’s death, after Tennessee’s wrongful death statute was up. The defendants asked for summary judgment arguing the lawsuit was time-barred. The trail court granted the motion, but on appeal, the Court of Appeals reversed the trial court decision. They found that the first lawsuit was not void but voidable because the savings statute was applicable.

Read the complete article about Foster v. St. Joseph Hospital here.

The attorneys at Gregory R. Giometti & Associates, P.C., have extensive experience handling wrongful death actions. If you require help with a wrongful death case, please start by downloading our free Ebook and then call Gregory R. Giometti & Associates, P.C. at (303) 333-1957.

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Gregory R. Giometti & Associates, P.C., is recognized as one of the top civil litigation firms in Colorado. Mr. Giometti and his associates are highly experienced trial attorneys who have conducted dozens of jury trials in both state and federal courts, mainly in Colorado, but also in Idaho, where Mr. Giometti is licensed as well. The focus of the firm’s practice is representation of insurance companies and their insureds in first and third-party claims.

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