APPEAL FROM THE TWENTY-FOURTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT PARISH
OF JEFFERSON, STATE OF LOUISIANA NO. 775-465, DIVISION
"L" HONORABLE DONALD A. ROWAN, JR., JUDGE PRESIDING
composed of Judges Fredericka Homberg Wicker, Stephen J.
Windhorst, and Marion F. Edwards, Judge Pro Tempore.
FREDERICKA HOMBERG WICKER JUDGE.
medical malpractice action, plaintiff-patient seeks review of
the trial court's January 29, 2018 judgment sustaining
defendants-healthcare providers' exceptions of
prescription and dismissing plaintiff's suit with
prejudice. For the following reasons, we find this Court
lacks jurisdiction to consider the merits of the appeal and
we dismiss the appeal as untimely.
August 30, 2017, plaintiff, Aimee Lasseigne, filed suit in
the Twenty-Fourth Judicial District Court for the Parish of
Jefferson against defendants, East Jefferson General Hospital
(EJGH), Dr. Andre Mouledoux, and Dr. Daniel Fontanez, for
damages arising out of an August 23, 2014 lumbar spinal tap
and related medical treatment performed at EJGH. Defendants
subsequently filed exceptions of prescription, contending
that plaintiff's request for a medical review panel was
not filed until June 30, 2016, more than one year from the
date of the alleged malpractice.
January 29, 2018, the trial court issued a written judgment
sustaining defendants' exceptions of prescription and
dismissing plaintiff's suit in its entirety with
prejudice. On that same date, the Clerk of Court issued and
mailed notice of the signing of judgment to all counsel of
record. On April 16, 2018, the trial court issued written
reasons for judgment. On May 11, 2018, plaintiff filed a
motion for devolutive appeal, seeking review of the January
29, 2018 judgment sustaining the defendants' exceptions
of prescription "as to which reasons were issued on
April 16, 2018."
subsequently filed a Motion to Dismiss Appeal in this Court,
asserting that plaintiff's appeal, seeking review of the
January 29, 2018 trial court judgment, is untimely.
C.C.P. art. 2087 provides the time period within which a
party must appeal a trial court judgment:
Except as otherwise provided in this Article or by other law,
an appeal which does not suspend the effect or the execution
of an appealable order or judgment may be taken within sixty
days of any of the following:
(1) The expiration of the delay for applying for a new trial
or judgment notwithstanding the verdict, as provided by
Article 1974 and Article 1811, if no application has been
(2) The date of the mailing of notice of the court's
refusal to grant a timely application for a new trial or
judgment notwithstanding the verdict, as provided under
delay for applying for a new trial is seven days, exclusive
of legal holidays. The delay for applying for a new trial
commences to run on the day after the clerk has mailed, or
the sheriff has served, the notice of judgment as required by
Article 1913. La. C.C.P. art. 1974. This Court has found
that, "an appellant's failure to file a devolutive
appeal timely is a jurisdictional defect, the result of which
is that neither the court of appeal nor any other court has
the jurisdictional power and authority to reverse, revise, or
modify a final judgment after the time for filing a
devolutive appeal has elapsed." Williams v. Atmos
Energy Corp., 09-1061 (La.App. 5 Cir. 05/11/10), 42
So.3d 409, 410-11.
case, the trial court judgment from which plaintiff seeks
review was issued on January 29, 2018. Therefore, plaintiff
had seven days from January 29, 2018, exclusive of legal
holidays, or February 7, 2018, to file an application for a
new trial. Because plaintiff did not file an application for
a new trial, she had sixty days from February 7, 2018, or
until April 9, 2018, to file a motion for a devolutive
appeal. Thus, plaintiff's motion for devolutive appeal
filed on May 11, 2018 was untimely.
motion for appeal filed in the trial court, plaintiff
references that the trial judge issued reasons for judgment
"on April 16, 2018." However, a judgment and
reasons for judgment are two separate and distinct legal
documents and appeals are taken from the judgment, not the
reasons for judgment. Alexander v.Maki,
15-517 (La.App. 5 Cir. 01/04/16), 183 So.3d 821, 822;
State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co. v. Jimenez, 98-1057
(La.App. 5 Cir. 1/26/99), 726 So.2d 465, 466; Franks v.
West Jefferson Medical Center, 97-179 (La.App. 5 Cir.
4/29/97), 694 So.2d 108; Ziegel v. South Central
Bell, 93-547 (La.App. 5 Cir. 3/16/94) 635 So.2d 314. The
judgment appealed in this case was issued on January 29,
2018. Thus, plaintiff's ...