Rodriguez, the defendant in a personal injury suit, sought a writ of certiorari
to quash a discovery order compelling him to answer discovery relating
to his medical circumstances and injuries sustained in the subject accident.
Rodriguez had not asserted any causes of action against the plaintiff.
Rodriguez therefore argued that only the plaintiff’s injuries were
the subject of pretrial discovery.
During pretrial discovery, Rodriguez testified that his leg and ankle had
been struck, apparently by debris while standing outside his vehicle at
the time of the incident. The plaintiff propounded the discovery at issue
in the appeal, which the trial court compelled Rodriguez to answer.
An order compelling discovery of irrelevant, confidential personal medical
records may meet the stringent test for certiorari jurisdiction. The Third
DCA noted that it may have exercised certiorari jurisdiction had the trial
court’s order required answers to the medical interrogatories without
limitation. The plaintiff, however, agreed that any responses to the facially
overbroad interrogatories may be confined to those medical circumstances
and injuries arising from the accident. Finding that discovery of the
nature and extent of Rodriguez’s injuries caused by flying debris
could be pertinent to the plaintiff’s proof regarding location and
force of the collision, or Rodriguez’s ability to provide information
to first responders, the Third DCA denied the writ.