The pre-trial discovery process can enable parties to lawsuits in New Mexico to obtain information they would not otherwise be able to access. A ruling by a magistrate judge for the U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico shows that, while discovery in personal injury cases can be broad, federal law also sets limits on what is potentially discoverable.
The plaintiff in the discovery dispute at issue brought a lawsuit seeking to recover damages for injuries she allegedly suffered following implantation of a surgical mesh product intended for treatment of medical conditions of the female pelvis. Among the defendants she sued were manufacturers and sellers of the surgical mesh and the doctor who allegedly recommended and implanted the mesh.
The underlying lawsuit has a somewhat complex procedural history because complications following surgical mesh implantations have occurred in multiple jurisdictions, and there are multiple courts hearing related disputes. In this case, one of the corporate defendants removed the plaintiff’s lawsuit from New Mexico state court to federal court based on diversity of citizenship jurisdiction. Then some aspects of the plaintiff’s lawsuit were swept into multi-district federal litigation in West Virginia. The case was ultimately remanded to the District of New Mexico, after some of the defendants were dismissed, for resolution of the claims the plaintiff asserted against the doctor who allegedly recommended and implanted the mesh. The plaintiff then filed an amended complaint alleging that the doctor who treated her had committed medical negligence by implanting the mesh in her body.