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Kloberdanz v United States Fidelity and Guaranty Insurance Company; (COA-UNP, 7/18/1997; RB #1944)


Michigan Court of Appeals; Docket No. 192637; Unpublished  
Judges Gribbs, Sawyer, and Young; Unanimous; Per Curiam  
Official Michigan Reporter Citation:  Not Applicable; Link to Opinion alt  

Obligation of Claimant to Submit to Physician Examination [§3151]   
General / Miscellaneous [§3151]    
Court Orders for Failure to Comply with Section 3151 and Section 3152 [§3153]

Legislative Purpose and Intent   

In this unanimous unpublished per curiam Opinion, the Court of Appeals dealt with two issues regarding defense medical examinations in PIP cases. First, the court held that it was inappropriate for the trial court to refer to examinations performed by defense doctors under §3151 as "independent" medical examinations. However, any prejudice that was created by such references by the trial judge was eliminated by a curative instruction informing the jury that the defense doctors were selected and hired by defendants.  

In this regard, the court noted,

"We acknowledge that defendant's medical examinations were not 'independent' because they were performed by doctors selected and paid for by defendant and that the trial court incorrectly indicated in front of the jury that the statute (§3151) reads independent medical examinations, when the statute in fact reads 'medical examinations.' However, the trial court cured any prejudicial effect that this discussion may have had by explaining to the jury that the examinations in question were done by doctors who were selected and paid for by defendant." 

Second, the court upheld sanctions imposed by the trial court under §31 S3 of the statute for plaintiffs willful failure to appear for defense scheduled medical examinations. In this case, the plaintiff resided in Colorado where he was receiving medical treatment. Defendant insurance company scheduled plaintiff for six separate examinations and offered to pay for the expense of flying plaintiff back to Michigan to attend the examinations. Plaintiff failed to appear for any of these examinations, and the trial court found that this failure was deliberate and dismissed that part of plaintiff s claims that were incurred from the date defendant offered to pay for plaintiff’s airfare until the date the plaintiff actually submitted to the examination. The Court of Appeals upheld the sanction because the "sanction was carefully crafted so as to only address plaintiff's failure to submit to defendant's request for a medical examination.”

Michigan auto accident attorney Stephen Sinas is the lead editor of the appellate case summaries published on this site regarding the Michigan auto insurance law. To learn more about how Stephen Sinas and how the Sinas Dramis Law Firm can help you if you have been injured in a Michigan auto accident, visit

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