The Daily


The fifth – and mercifully final – in the series of blogs about how the Senses play out in litigation.

I confess – I am at a loss on this one. But having given myself the task, I am determined to complete it. To state the obvious, there aren’t a lot of cases in my practice where the parties, lawyers, witnesses or jurors taste the evidence. I can imagine this happening in a criminal case. But in the civil context, I’ve never heard of taste playing a huge factor.

Neurological harm, damage and injuries can often affect one or more of the Senses – I have represented clients who lost their sight (to stroke and infection), their hearing, the feeling in their limbs (paralysis or paresthesia), the sense of smell (ansomnia, closely related to taste) and their ability to speak (another lawyer once refused my invitation to try an interview – rather than depose –  a mute client who’d suffered a stroke. So I videotaped the ‘deposition’, during which my client furiously scribbled his answers on a notepad and showed them to defense counsel. That went on for about a half hour and the case settled soon after).

But I’ve never represented anyone who suffered only an injury to the sense of taste.

Which brings me to mechanical bowel preparation. The technical definition of “taste” suggests that its use is most apt where small amounts are involved. That would seem to make mechanical bowel preparation solutions inapplicable. If you’ve ever had the displeasure, enormous amounts of the odious fluid are consumed by the patient. But regardless of the amount, like any medical procedure, it is not without risk and has to be carefully monitored by your physician.

I represented a woman who was prescribed a particular kind of mechanical bowel preparation by her physician, despite the solution being contraindicated for diabetics. She was a diabetic. After dutifully taking all the solution, it put her into liver failure and requires a shortened lifetime of dialysis.

Experience, both quality and quantity, with serious cases is a fundamental requirement when choosing a lawyer. More importantly, hire a qualified professional who is wholly committed to advocating for the rights of those who cannot advocate for themselves. “Experience is the life of the law.”


The Thompson Law Firm