Liberal Use of Discovery Transcripts Granted in Case of Indivisible Injuries

Reasons for judgement were released this week by the BC Supreme Court, Victoria Registry, considering whether defendants in separate actions could use each others examination for discovery transcripts of the Plaintiff in trial.
In today’s case (Elworthy v. Tillit) the Plaintiff alleged personal injury from two separate matters.  Both parties agreed the separate lawsuits should be heard together given overlapping injury but could not agree if both defendants could use the Plaintiff’s examination for discovery transcripts from the separate actions.  In finding they could Master Bouck provided the following reasons:

6]             The defendant Stewart led the submissions on the law with references to several common law authorities including Gill v. Gill, 2013 BCSC 2365. In that case, the court decided that the implied undertaking rule could be waived so that a transcript of the plaintiff’s examination for discovery in a Part 7 action could be used in the plaintiff’s tort action, and vice versa.

[7]             Although not precisely the same factual matrix as the case at bar, I find that the legal analysis and result in Gill v. Gill should be followed here. The same concerns raised by the plaintiff in this case were considered and rejected by the court in Gill. Here, the issues of causation and indivisible injuries provide the commonality between the actions.

[8]             The defendants differ on the language to be used in this particular case plan order. In my view, the appropriate language is that found in Peel v. Western Delta, 2003 BCSC 784 at para. 30. The order pronounced is that the evidence that is otherwise admissible and relevant, obtained at the examination for discovery in Victoria Registry action no.14-0946 (either concluded or future) will be admissible both in that action and in Victoria Registry action no. 15-2263 as if the evidence had been obtained in the other action.

bc injury law, Elworthy v. Tillit, examination for discovery, implied undertaking of confidentiality, Master Bouck

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ERIK
MAGRAKEN

Personal Injury Lawyer

When not writing the BC Injury Law Blog, Erik is the managing partner at MacIsaac & Company, based in Victoria, B.C. He is also involved with combative sports regulatory issues and authors the Combat Sports Law Blog.

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