Proposed Testimony of Plaintiff’s Expert, Dr. Arnold Brody, Precluded as Being Cumulative U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, March 30, 2018
WASHINGTON — In this case, the plaintiff had already presented testimony from occupational and environmental medicine physician, Dr. Carl Brodkin, on the impacts of asbestos on the body. The plaintiff then was looking to call Dr. Arnold Brody to also provide expert opinion on this subject. The defendant objected, arguing that both experts testimony is substantially similar and should be precluded as cumulative. The court agreed.
In its decision, the court outlined the proffered testimony of Dr. Brody and stated that his testimony would have minimal value to the case. The court then went on to state that “the similarity between Dr. Brodkin’s testimony and Dr. Brody’s proffered testimony goes beyond mere overlap and instead, crosses into the unnecessarily cumulative. Both offer insight on the body’s natural defenses against fiber inhalation and what occurs when those natural defenses fail. Both instruct on the consequences of asbestos fibers that are deposited along the respiratory tract, including the resulting scarring on the lungs and pleura. Both detail the damage asbestos fibers can have on cell division, resulting in errors in cell growth and ultimately, the development of lung cancer and mesothelioma. Finally, both remark on the dose-responsive nature of the disease and its lack of cure. The degree of similarity between the two expert testimonies is illustrated succinctly by the fact that the two experts’ respective PowerPoint presentations feature some identical slides. This danger of presenting needlessly cumulative evidence substantially outweighs the minimal probative value of Dr. Brody’s testimony.” (internal citations omitted)