Amerose v. The Hospital of Central Connecticut
Certain amendments to the offer-of-compromise statute, Connecticut General Statutes §52-192a(b), are procedural and apply retroactively. The plaintiff, Dorene Amerose, alleged that she went to the Hospital of Central Connecticut in November 2008, complaining about a headache, left arm and neck pain and was discharged without a cardiac study. Later that day, Amerose allegedly had a cardiac arrest. Amerose sued the hospital, alleging it was negligent. The hospital objected to the plaintiff's offer of compromise. The hospital argued that the plaintiff failed to disclose medical experts on the standard of care and to certify that she disclosed all the relevant evidence that supports her claims, pursuant to Practice Book §17-14A. The plaintiff maintained that she complied with the current version of C.G.S. §52-192a(b), which took effect Oct. 1, 2011, and that the legislature intended to supercede certain requirements in the earlier version of the statute and Practice Book §17-14A. The earlier version of the statute required that "an offer of compromise . . . shall state with specificity all damages then known to the plaintiff," and required that the plaintiff disclose medical records and "expert witnesses who will testify as to the prevailing professional standard of care." The current version of the statute removes many of these requirements, provided that the complaint is served one year prior to the date that the offer of compromise is filed. The statute is silent with respect to whether the amendments apply retroactively. The court found that because the amendments to the statute were procedural, the amendments apply retroactively. The court overruled the defendant's objection, because the offer of compromise was filed more than one year after the complaint was served. The court granted the defendant an additional 30 days within which to consider the offer.