Lane & Waterman attorneys Benjamin Patterson and Grace Mangieri successfully defended a Northern Illinois nursing home against a former resident who sought damages for alleged medical malpractice. The defense asked the Court to dismiss the complaint based on the plaintiff’s failure to provide an affidavit of merit in accordance with 735 ILCS 5/2-622, which requires a plaintiff seeking damages for injuries or death by reason of medical, hospital, or other healing art malpractice, to file an affidavit of merit demonstrating there is a reasonable and meritorious cause for filing of such action. Though the plaintiff claimed she planned to subpoena her medical records and provide such affidavit after filing the complaint, the defense argued that to allow the plaintiff to do so was exactly the type of situation 2-622 was designed to prevent and that a plaintiff should not be allowed to file a frivolous lawsuit hoping to discover a meritorious claim after the fact. Agreeing with the defense, the Circuit Court dismissed the complaint with prejudice, and the plaintiff appealed. Affirming the Circuit Court’s dismissal with prejudice, the Third District Appellate Court reasoned that even though the Circuit Court is not required to enter a dismissal with prejudice in such situations, it is certainly within its discretion to do so.
Benjamin J. Patterson joined Lane & Waterman in 2006 and practices in the Litigation & Appeals group, focusing primarily on medical malpractice, professional malpractice, commercial litigation, construction law, product liability and mass torts. He represents clients in both Iowa and Illinois state and federal courts.
Grace E. Mangieri joined Lane and Waterman in January 2019. She focuses primarily on litigation, and is involved in all stages of civil litigation defense. Prior to joining Lane and Waterman, Grace practiced in Chicago serving as toxic tort National Coordinating Counsel for a leading product manufacturer, effectively managing and coordinating litigation defense strategy, including discovery, dispositive motion practice and trial workup for high indemnity jurisdictions.