Maryland Court Discusses Venue in Medical Malpractice Cases

Nurses, like doctors, can be held liable if they carelessly perform their duties and cause people harm. Malpractice lawsuits against nurses must be pursued in the appropriate forum, however, and if they are not, the defendant can ask the court to transfer the case to another venue. There can be more than one proper venue, though, and the court will not transfer a case if the plaintiff’s chosen forum is appropriate. This was demonstrated in a recent Maryland nursing malpractice case in which an appellate court ultimately reversed the trial court’s ruling granting the defendant’s motion for a change of venue. If you suffered permanent losses due to the negligence of a nurse, you could be owed damages, and you should speak to a Maryland medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible.

Background of the Case

It is alleged that the plaintiff visited the defendant’s clinic in Baltimore City in 2010 to have an IUD implanted. She presented to another clinic owned by the defendant in Baltimore County in 2018 to undergo removal of the IUD. During the removal, which the defendant nurse performed, a piece of the IUD broke off and remained in the plaintiff’s uterus. She underwent a procedure to attempt to remove the fragment but ultimately had to undergo a hysterectomy.

Reportedly, the plaintiff then filed a lawsuit in Baltimore City alleging lack of informed consent, medical negligence, and other claims against the defendants and the entities that manufactured and sold the IUD. The defendants moved to transfer venue to Baltimore County; the trial court granted the motion, and the plaintiff appealed.

Venue for Maryland Medical Malpractice Cases

Multiple Maryland statutes address venue. The first states that a plaintiff must file a civil lawsuit in any county in which the defendant lives, works, or carries on a regular business. If there is more than one defendant, the case can be filed in any county where any of the defendants can be sued. The second venue statute notes that if a plaintiff is pursuing tort claims based on a theory of negligence, venue is proper where the cause of action arose.

In the subject case, the defendants argued that because the plaintiff’s alleged harm occurred in Baltimore County during the removal of the IUD, it was the proper venue. The appellate court explained that while Baltimore County was an appropriate venue, so was Baltimore City, as the defendants regularly conducted business there. Thus, the appellate court reversed the trial court ruling.

Consult a Trusted Maryland Attorney

Nurses are expected to offer their patients competent care, and if they do not, they should be held accountable for any losses that arise out of their negligence.  If you suffered harm due to the recklessness of a nurse, it is advisable to consult an attorney to discuss your potential claims. The trusted Maryland attorneys of Arfaa Law Group can advise you of your rights and aid you in seeking the full amount of compensation available under the law. You can contact us via our online form or by calling us at (410) 889-1850 to set up a meeting.

Contact Information