(735 ILCS 5/2-622) (from Ch. 110, par. 2-622)
Sec. 2-622. Healing art malpractice.
(a) In any action, whether in tort, contract or otherwise, in which the plaintiff seeks damages for injuries or death by reason of medical, hospital, or other healing art malpractice, the plaintiff's attorney or the plaintiff, if the plaintiff is proceeding pro se, shall file an affidavit, attached to the original and all copies of the complaint, declaring one of the following:
1. That the affiant has consulted and reviewed the
facts of the case with a health professional who the affiant reasonably believes: (i) is knowledgeable in the relevant issues involved in the particular action; (ii) practices or has practiced within the last 6 years or teaches or has taught within the last 6 years in the same area of health care or medicine that is at issue in the particular action; and (iii) is qualified by experience or demonstrated competence in the subject of the case; that the reviewing health professional has determined in a written report, after a review of the medical record and other relevant material involved in the particular action that there is a reasonable and meritorious cause for the filing of such action; and that the affiant has concluded on the basis of the reviewing health professional's review and consultation that there is a reasonable and meritorious cause for filing of such action. If the affidavit is filed as to a defendant who is a physician licensed to treat human ailments without the use of drugs or medicines and without operative surgery, a dentist, a podiatric physician, a psychologist, or a naprapath, the written report must be from a health professional licensed in the same profession, with the same class of license, as the defendant. For affidavits filed as to all other defendants, the written report must be from a physician licensed to practice medicine in all its branches. In either event, the affidavit must identify the profession of the reviewing health professional. A copy of the written report, clearly identifying the plaintiff and the reasons for the reviewing health professional's determination that a reasonable and meritorious cause for the filing of the action exists, must be attached to the affidavit, but information which would identify the reviewing health professional may be deleted from the copy so attached.
2. That the affiant was unable to obtain a
consultation required by paragraph 1 because a statute of limitations would impair the action and the consultation required could not be obtained before the expiration of the statute of limitations. If an affidavit is executed pursuant to this paragraph, the certificate and written report required by paragraph 1 shall be filed within 90 days after the filing of the complaint. The defendant shall be excused from answering or otherwise pleading until 30 days after being served with a certificate required by paragraph 1.
3. That a request has been made by the plaintiff or
his attorney for examination and copying of records pursuant to Part 20 of Article VIII of this Code and the party required to comply under those Sections has failed to produce such records within 60 days of the receipt of the request. If an affidavit is executed pursuant to this paragraph, the certificate and written report required by paragraph 1 shall be filed within 90 days following receipt of the requested records. All defendants except those whose failure to comply with Part 20 of Article VIII of this Code is the basis for an affidavit under this paragraph shall be excused from answering or otherwise pleading until 30 days after being served with the certificate required by paragraph 1.
(b) Where a certificate and written report are required pursuant to this Section a separate certificate and written report shall be filed as to each defendant who has been named in the complaint and shall be filed as to each defendant named at a later time.
(c) Where the plaintiff intends to rely on the doctrine of "res ipsa loquitur", as defined by Section 2-1113 of this Code, the certificate and written report must state that, in the opinion of the reviewing health professional, negligence has occurred in the course of medical treatment. The affiant shall certify upon filing of the complaint that he is relying on the doctrine of "res ipsa loquitur".
(d) When the attorney intends to rely on the doctrine of failure to inform of the consequences of the procedure, the attorney shall certify upon the filing of the complaint that the reviewing health professional has, after reviewing the medical record and other relevant materials involved in the particular action, concluded that a reasonable health professional would have informed the patient of the consequences of the procedure.
(e) Allegations and denials in the affidavit, made without reasonable cause and found to be untrue, shall subject the party pleading them or his attorney, or both, to the payment of reasonable expenses, actually incurred by the other party by reason of the untrue pleading, together with reasonable attorneys' fees to be summarily taxed by the court upon motion made within 30 days of the judgment or dismissal. In no event shall the award for attorneys' fees and expenses exceed those actually paid by the moving party, including the insurer, if any. In proceedings under this paragraph (e), the moving party shall have the right to depose and examine any and all reviewing health professionals who prepared reports used in conjunction with an affidavit required by this Section.
(f) A reviewing health professional who in good faith prepares a report used in conjunction with an affidavit required by this Section shall have civil immunity from liability which otherwise might result from the preparation of such report.
(g) The failure to file a certificate required by this Section shall be grounds for dismissal under Section 2-619.
(Source: P.A. 97-1145, eff. 1-18-13; 98-214, eff. 8-9-13.)
Last modified: February 18, 2015