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Compelling the Plaintiff to Submit to an Independant Medical Examination Out of State

August 5, 2020

In an unpublished opinion the Superior Court for the District of Columbia refused to compel a Plaintiff in a medical malpractice action to travel from the District of Columbia to Philadelphia for an independent medical examination.  The Plaintiff claimed medical treatment destroyed her sense of taste.  After the Plaintiff refused Defendant’s request that she travel to Philadelphia for examination with a nationally-renowned expert, the Defendant filed a motion to compel her to do so.

The Court refused, noting that the expert could either travel to the District of Columbia or that a local expert could be retained.  While this opinion is unreported, it demonstrates that, even with relatively unique injuries, the Court will likely be sensitive to the distance a Plaintiff may need to travel for examination.  If there is an expert that is uniquely-qualified, the expert may need to travel to the Plaintiff. Franklen v. Dist. Hosp. Partners, L.P., 2016 D.C. Super. LEXIS 18, * 1 (D.C.Super.Ct.2016)