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Brian and Michelle Sadler, Individually and On Behalf of v. Advanced Bionics

April 3, 2013

BRIAN AND MICHELLE SADLER, INDIVIDUALLY AND ON BEHALF OF THEIR MINOR CHILD, B.S. PLAINTIFFS
v.
ADVANCED BIONICS, LLC DEFENDANT



MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

Brian and Michelle Sadler bring this action individually, and on her behalf, against Advanced Bionics, the manufacturer of her cochlear implant. Allegedly, the product was defective. After a motion in summary judgment dismissed many of Plaintiffs' claims on preemption grounds, Plaintiffs presently pursue this case on two theories of liability, strict liability and negligence. The Court now addresses Plaintiffs' motion on selected testimony (ECF No. 89), and finds that the motion is sustained in part and denied in part.

I.

Both parties agree that some areas of selected testimony are inadmissible. Accordingly, the Court will sustain the motion as to the following areas of testimony:

(1) Evidence from expert witnesses who were not identified as such;

(2) Evidence from expert witnesses that is outside the scope of their written opinion or pretrial deposition testimony*fn1 ;

(3) Evidence regarding Plaintiffs' financial condition;

(4) Evidence regarding payment to Plaintiffs' or Defendant's attorneys;

(5) Evidence of counsels' family illnesses; and

(6) Commentary that counsel know what the Plaintiffs are going through.

Further, the Court can dispose of several selected areas without much discussion.

The Court will exclude statements that Advanced Bionics' employees have Advanced Bionics cochlear implants and are satisfied with their experience. The Court will also exclude commentary from any Advanced Bionics witnesses about themselves or family members who have or to whom they have recommended Advanced Bionics implants. This evidence is irrelevant and has tendency to prejudice a jury that far outweighs its slight probative value.

The Court also will exclude evidence that the parties did not produce in discovery, because as a general matter, parties are confined to present the evidence produced in discovery. Where the parties seek to present newly discovered evidence, the parties should apprise the Court of that evidence outside the presence of the jury, and the Court will address any objections thereto at the time.

Finally, the Court sustains the motion to exclude evidence that Mr. and Mrs. Sadler are divorced or had marital problems, because this Court already determined that Mr. and Mrs. Sadler cannot collect emotional damages (ECF No. 174), rendering this motion moot. Any residual purpose this evidence may serve is irrelevant and unnecessarily prejudicial. However, the Court notes that in pretrial ...


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