Skip to Main Content
Services Talent Knowledge
Site Search
Menu

Alert

Our attorneys stay on top of changes in legislation, agency regulations, case law, and industry trends—then craft timely legal alerts to keep clients up to date on legal developments important to their business.

September 7, 2023

Second Department Declines to Expand Scope of Arons

The New York Court of Appeals in Arons v. Jutkowitz1 concluded that a personal injury plaintiff may be compelled to provide an authorization permitting the adverse party’s counsel to conduct and ex parte interview of the plaintiff’s treating physician. The medical provider would be permitted, but not required, to make the requested disclosure. In the 15 years since Arons was decided, “Arons,” or speaking authorizations, have become a vital tool for defense counsel probing a plaintiff’s medical condition and injuries.

On July 12, 2023, in Gladys Yan v. Kalikow Management Inc.,2 the Appellate Division, Second Department, affirmed the lower court’s decision denying the defendants’ motion to compel the plaintiff, according to Arons, to provide an authorization that would allow the defendant’s counsel to interview the plaintiff’s treating physician assistant about the reason the plaintiff tripped and fell instead of her injury and medical treatment. 

The issue before the court was whether an Arons applied to disclosure of information about causation and liability rather than merely medical treatment. As this was a case of first impression, the Second Department utilized the analysis imposed by the First Department in a similar case in which it declined to expand the reach of Arons to require depositions of medical providers whose records included conflicting accounts of how the plaintiff’s accident occurred.3 The Second Department in Yan also declined the defendant’s request to extend the scope of Arons beyond the provision of speaking authorizations. 

The appellate court concluded that authorizing the inclusion of an ex parte interview with a medical provider about the cause of an accident would constitute an unwarranted extension of the New York Court of Appeal’s holding in Arons. The court noted that alternative discovery methods exist under Article 31 of the New York Civil Practice Law & Rules to obtain the sought after information, and counsel should look to those disclosure devices. Practitioners should be aware of the limited scope of the Arons holding in order to avoid delay and unnecessary motion practice seeking to expand its reach.

If you have any questions regarding the content of this alert, please contact Amanda Miller, associate, at amiller@barclaydamon.com; Matthew Larkin, Torts & Products Liability Defense Practice Area chair, at mlarkin@barclaydamon.com; or another member of the firm’s Torts & Products Liability Defense Practice Area.
                                                                            

 19 N.Y.3d 393 (2007).
 22023 NY Slip Op 03817 (2d Dep’t 2023).
 3Rucinski v. More Restoration Co. Inc., 147 A.D.3d 485 (1st Dep’t 2017).
 

Featured Media

Alerts

COVID-19 Business Interruption Update: New York High Court Affirms in Favor of Insurer

Alerts

USFWS Introduces General Permit for Bald and Golden Eagle Incidental Take

Alerts

ORES Executive Director Issues First Denial of Section 94-C Permit Application Following Applicant's Partial Loss of Site Control

Alerts

New Details About OPWDD Spending in the New York State FY 2025 Executive Budget

Alerts

Second Circuit Reverses in Favor of Insured in $600,000 Fire Loss Case

Alerts

New York State Minimum Wage Increases Are Here: Are You Compliant?

We're Growing in DC!

We’re excited to announce Barclay Damon’s combination with Washington DC–based Shapiro, Lifschitz & Schram. SLS’s 10 lawyers, three paralegals, and four administrative staff will join Barclay Damon while maintaining their current office in DC’s central business district. Our clients will benefit from SLS’s corporate, real estate, finance, and construction litigation experience and national energy-industry profile, and their clients from our full range of services.

Read More

This site uses cookies to give you the best experience possible on our site and in some cases direct advertisements to you based upon your use of our site.

By clicking [I agree], you are agreeing to our use of cookies. For information on what cookies we use and how to manage our use of cookies, please visit our Privacy Statement.

I AgreeOpt-Out