Illinois Supreme Court Considers Pattern Jury Instruction for Professional Negligence


The Illinois Supreme Court addressed an interesting issue earlier this month: whether the Illinois Pattern Jury Instructions on the standard of care for professional negligence correctly stated the law in Illinois. This issue was considered in Studt v. Sherman Health Systems, 2011 WL 2409897.

In Studt, the plaintiff filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the defendant based on claims of institutional negligence and vicarious liability due to the hospital physicians’ failure to diagnose the plaintiff’s appendicitis. The defendant appealed following a jury trial which resulted in a favorable verdict for the plaintiff.

One issue raised on appeal by the defendant was that the applicable section of Illinois pattern jury instructions, IPI Civil (2006) No. 105.01, incorrectly stated that the jury may consider evidentiary sources other than expert testimony when determining whether the physicians were negligent in their duties.

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