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Maryland Court Discusses Venue in Cases Arising Out of Negligence

Generally, Maryland law affords plaintiffs the right to file lawsuits in the venue of their choice. There are specific parameters they must abide by, however, and if a defendant believes the plaintiff’s chosen venue is improper, it can move to transfer the case to another court. Recently, a Maryland court explained the grounds for relocating a case on the basis of improper venue in a matter in which the plaintiff alleged that she suffered harm due to the negligent insertion and removal of an IUD birth control device. If you sustained losses due to negligent medical care, it is in your best interest to meet with a Maryland medical malpractice attorney to assess your options for seeking damages.

The Facts of the Case

It is alleged that the plaintiff underwent an IUD birth control device implantation in 2010. The procedure was performed at Baltimore city clinic owned by the defendant. In 2018, the plaintiff visited the defendant’s Baltimore County clinic to have the IUD removed by the defendant nurse practitioner. The IUD broke during the process of removal, leaving a fragment in the plaintiff’s uterus. She underwent a subsequent surgery to remove the portion left behind, but it was unsuccessful, and she had to undergo a hysterectomy.

Reportedly, the plaintiff subsequently filed a lawsuit in the Circuit Court for Baltimore City, naming the clinic, the nurse practitioner, and three foreign companies involved in manufacturing and distributing the IUD as defendants. The defendant clinic and defendant nurse practitioner moved to transfer the matter to the Circuit Court for Baltimore County because the plaintiff’s chosen venue was improper. The trial court granted the motion, and the plaintiff appealed.

Transferring Cases on the Basis of Improper Venue

Under Maryland law, civil lawsuits should be pursued in the county where the defendant resides, carries on regular business, works, or engages in a vocation. If there are multiple defendants, they may be sued in any county in which any of them could be sued. Further, the law provides that tort actions that arise out of negligence may be brought where the cause of action arose.

In the subject case, the appellate court noted that the salient issue was whether the plaintiff’s negligence action arose in Baltimore City or Baltimore County. As the plaintiff’s harm occurred during the removal of the IUD at the Baltimore County clinic, the court found that while the venue was proper in Baltimore County, it was not the only venue where the plaintiff could institute suit against the defendants; instead, Baltimore City was an appropriate venue as well. Thus, the appellate court vacated the trial court ruling and remanded the matter for further proceedings.

Meet with an Experienced Maryland Attorney

Health care providers must provide their patients with competent care, and if they do not, they can be held accountable for any harm that arises from their recklessness. If you sustained losses because of medical malpractice, it is advisable to speak to an attorney about your potential claims. The skilled Maryland attorneys of Foran & Foran, P.A. can evaluate the circumstances surrounding your harm and help you seek the full extent of damages recoverable under the law.  Our office is located in Greenbelt, and we frequently represent parties in claims against health care providers in cities in Prince George’s County and Montgomery County. You can contact us via our form online or by calling us at (301) 441-2022 to set up a confidential and free consultation.

 

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