This week, you will have to research, write an office memo, and write a client letter. Read this Memo sent to you by the Senior Partner in your law firm, Plentibux & Moore:
Memo to: Jack Starr, Paralegal
Subject: Memorandum on Federal Tort Claims Act / Feres Doctrine
As you will recall, I represent the Hooah Family. The Hooahs were the victims of an unfortunate string of circumstances. While driving down I-95, their minivan was struck by a semi-tractor trailer. Both Sergeant First Class (SFC) “Iron Mike” Hooah (U.S. Army) and Sergeant (SGT) Ima Hooah (U.S. Army), who was pregnant with their child, suffered injuries and were taken to the nearest hospital, the Army hospital at Fort Ekman, Virginia, for emergency care.
Unfortunately, during the emergency surgery on SFC Hooah, the Army doctors inadvertently left surgical sponges in SFC Hooah’s stomach causing severe abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, and, inexplicably, trench foot. The Hooah’s tragedy was made all the worse when a nerve in SGT Ima Hooah’s right foot was severed, causing her severe pain and a permanent limp. Finally, the Hooah’s unborn child suffered adverse effects from the general anesthesia, which was improperly administered to Ima Hooah. The unborn child will likely suffer permanent brain damage as a result of the anesthesia.
I need a quick but detailed answer as to the elements of negligent malpractice under Virginia Law, the Feres doctrine, and the likelihood of prevailing in law suits against the Army on behalf of SFC Hooah, SGT Hooah, and their unborn child. Please also outline any limits to the Feres doctrine.
1. Draft an office memorandum, using the same format you have used on past memos in this class. Make sure you cite the relevant statutes, case law, and pertinent regulations. Your answer must not exceed five pages in length. Make sure you use proper Blue Book citation in your memo. Use LexisNexis for your research.
2. Once you have completed the office memo, draft a client opinion letter, explaining what you found in your research, for my signature.
Turn in your office memo, and your letter as a single word document (.doc or .docx file).