New York Court orders production of plaintiff’s cannabis dispensary records

05.15.2019

Callaghan v Ery Tenant LLC, No. 150534/2018, 2019 WL 1896532, at *1 (N.Y. Sup. Ct. NY Cty Apr. 24, 2019) (Nervo, J.) is a current New York Supreme slip-and-fall case involving claims asserted under the New York Labor Law, and a recent decision from the court addresses the discoverability of a plaintiff’s medical marijuana prescription records.

During discovery, after the plaintiff testified that he received a medical cannabis card after the accident—but had not used cannabis for years prior—the defendants moved to compel the plaintiff to produce his medical marijuana records. The defendants argued that marijuana can cause dizziness, and since the plaintiff claimed that he suffered from dizziness after the accident, the records related to a condition that the plaintiff placed into controversy. The Supreme Court denied the motion and noted that the deposition transcript was “silent as to the basis for [plaintiff’s] medical marijuana prescription, and plaintiff suffers from several chronical medical conditions not placed in issue by his suit.” The Court therefore concluded that the defendants “failed to show the plaintiff was prescribed medical marijuana for a condition placed in issue by this suit,” and accordingly denied the motion to compel.

With the rise in medical cannabis and the tension that exists between its therapeutic and intoxicating effects, the standard for when a plaintiff places their marijuana prescription into controversy is likely to remain an important issue.

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05.15.2019  |  PRACTICE AREAS: Litigation and Dispute Resolution  |  INDUSTRIES: Cannabis

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