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Ballard v. Immel

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA


July 2, 2007

DAVID BALLARD, PLAINTIFF
v.
DAVID IMMEL, ET AL., DEFENDANTS

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Judge Conner

ORDER

AND NOW, this 2nd day of July, 2007, upon consideration of defendant's motion in limine (Doc. 112) to prohibit plaintiff from offering lay opinion testimony regarding his: (1) present and future physical impairments, and (2) past, present, and future psychological impairments, and the court finding that plaintiff may offer lay opinion testimony regarding his past and present physical and psychological symptoms, see FED. R. EVID. 701 (permitting lay witnesses to offer testimony that is "rationally based on the perception of the witness"), but that plaintiff may not offer lay opinion testimony regarding the permanent nature and/or medical diagnoses of those physical and psychological symptoms, see id. (prohibiting lay witnesses from offering opinions "based on scientific, technical, or other specialized knowledge"), and that plaintiff bears the burden to prove the amount of "damages that flowed from [his] alleged injury," Rochez Bros., Inc. v. Rhoades, 527 F.2d 891, 894 (3d Cir. 1975), but that the question of whether plaintiff has met such burden is more appropriately reserved for trial, it is hereby ORDERED that the motion in limine (Doc. 112) is GRANTED in part and DENIED in part as follows:

1. Absent testimony from a medical expert, plaintiff is precluded from offering lay opinion testimony regarding:

a. The permanent nature of his physical and psychological symptoms, and

b. The medical diagnoses of his physical and psychological symptoms (e.g., post traumatic stress disorder). See FED. R. EVID. 701.

2. The motion in limine (Doc. 112) is otherwise DENIED.

3. The court's ruling is made without prejudice to defendants' rights to move for judgment as a matter of law on certain categories of damages.*fn1 See FED. R. CIV. P. 50.

CHRISTOPHER C. CONNER United States District Judge


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