Moses v. DrakeAnnotate this Case
Plaintiff-appellant Tricia Moses was involved in a rear-end motor vehicle collision where defendant-appellee Aaron Drake's vehicle struck Moses' vehicle. Drake pled guilty to a citation for following a motor vehicle too closely. At the time of the incident, Moses was 26 weeks pregnant. Due to her past medical history, Moses was in a program for high-risk pregnancies. After the collision, Moses delivered her child prematurely at 31 weeks. While Moses' complaint contained allegations of trauma-induced premature birth and trauma-induced mental and physical difficulties relating to the child, Moses did not oppose dismissal of all claims pertaining to the child. Due to the severe nature of the claimed injuries in Moses' complaint, it appeared initially that Drake needed multiple experts to address the various claims. Drake's counsel requested at least six months to prepare expert reports after Moses' expert reports were due. After Moses failed to meet a deadline, Drake filed a motion to dismiss. In response, Moses' counsel contacted Drake's counsel, and the parties agreed to a stipulation modifying the scheduling order and extending the expert disclosure deadlines. The stipulation was then approved by the Superior Court. When a new deadline was set, Moses produced a one-paragraph opinion from her treating physician, Dr. Stephen Ogden. Drake filed a motion to dismiss on the basis that Dr. Ogden's opinion was legally insufficient because he used the word "feasible." Drake argued that "feasible" did not meet the standard for reasonable medical probability because the dictionary definition is synonymous with "possible." On appeal of the district court's grant of summary judgment to Drake, Moses argued: (1) Dr. Odgen's medical opinion was sufficient to deny Drake's motion for summary judgment on the claim that the medical opinion was legally deficient; and (2) in the alternative, that the denial of her motion to reargue was improper given Dr. Ogden's "clarifications" of his opinion. Finding no reversible error, the Supreme Court affirmed the grant of summary judgment.