Ethics Lesson for Med. Mal. Defense Counsel, Part 2
In the aftermath of the Wilson v. IHC opinion discussed in the previous post, the Utah Supreme Court remanded the case to the trial court, in part, for consideration of sanctions against attorney JoAnn Bott and Defendant IHC for certain conduct the court deemed inappropriate, including, but not limited to "engag[ing] in ex parte meetings with Dr. Richard Boyer ("Dr. Boyer"), a treating physician."
Judge Christine S. Johnson presided over the sanctions trial. Judge Johnson subsequently issued an extensive 27-page ruling (Ruling and Order on Plaintiff's Motion for Sanctions, February 17, 2016, Case No. 150100044). Judge Johnson imposed severe sanctions against both IHC and defense counsel for numerous legal and ethical violations. The ruling is intriguing reading, and provides rare insights into the mindset of attorneys who begin to take their obligation of zealous representation to far, and begin to see their role as defending a particular client at any cost.
A complete copy of the sanctions ruling is included below.