Jerome R. Aiken

230 S. Second Street

P.O. Box 22680

Yakima, WA 98907

Email: aiken@mftlaw.com           Tel: (509) 575-8500                        Fax: (509) 575-4676                            

About Mr. Aiken
 

Mr. Aiken has been involved as lead or co-counsel in over 50 complex trials.  These matters included medical malpractice, product liability, commercial litigation, wrongful discharge and premises liability litigation.  There are very few lawyers in Central Washington, if any, actively trying civil trials that have tried more civil cases than        Mr. Aiken. In the last several years, Mr. Aiken has tried over 35 civil cases primarily in Benton, Franklin, and Yakima Counties and it is believed Mr. Aiken has tried more civil trials in Yakima County than any other active litigation lawyer.  Mr. Aiken has also tried cases in Adams, Walla Walla, Grant, King, Lincoln, and Spokane Counties.  Mr. Aiken has successfully tried a variety of cases including the following:

  • Represented a gynecologist against allegations that she negligently performed a hysterectomy causing the patient additional surgeries, incontinence, and emotional damages. Defense Verdict.

  • Represented a counseling center in a case where one of its psychiatric patients brutally murdered his grandmother. Defense Verdict.

  • Represented a teacher against allegations by an adult that the teacher sexually molested her as a first grader. Defense Verdict. 

  • Represented a hospital with a psychiatric unit against allegations by a patient that  she was sexually molested while a patient in the psychiatric unit. Defense Verdict. 

  • Represented an ophthalmologist against allegations that delayed treatment caused blindness in one of the patient's eyes. Defense Verdict. 

  • Represented an emergency physician against allegations that treatment led to visual loss in Plaintiff. Directed verdict in favor of the defense after the second day of trial.

  • Represented a hospital where a neonate retained a foreign object in the trachea because of a procedure. Patient required airlifting to Children's Hospital in Seattle. Plaintiff requested over $1,000,000; jury verdict for a little over $200,000.

  • Represented a hospital where a patient retained a sponge following a procedure, which caused another surgery and a delay in chemotherapy for the patient with cancer. Plaintiff requested $1,000,000. Jury verdict for a little over $100,000.

  • Represented a hospital against allegations that a delayed diagnosis caused a patient to have one of his legs amputated. Plaintiff requested the jury award over $10,000,000. Defendants had offered $1,000,000 prior to trial. Jury verdict for slightly over $100,000.

  • Represented a nursing home where the nurse administered ten times the insulin ordered by the physician. Jury awarded less than Mr. Aiken suggested would be a reasonable award. 

  • Represented a nursing home where delay in treatment caused the death of a patient with five adult children. Alleged claims of abuse, neglect and abandonment under the Washington Vulnerable Abuse Statute, which would have allowed Plaintiff to recover attorney fees and expert witness fees. Jury concluded no abuse, neglect, or abandonment and awarded slightly over $200,000.

  • Acted as lead counsel in a trial with three Plaintiffs for breach of contract against Key Bank. Jury verdict in favor of Mr. Aiken's client in excess of $1,200,000, and in favor of the other two Defendants in excess of $1,000,000.

  • Represented the owners of a potato processing facility where it was alleged the other party had a right to purchase the facility and over $15,000,000 in damages were claimed against Mr. Aiken's client. Case settled for approximately $250,000 on the third day of trial.

  • Represented three sons whose stepmother attempted to disinherit them from their father's estate. Jury verdict resulted in the sons receiving several hundred thousand dollars. 

  • Represented a partner in a matter where the other partners were attempting to disavow Mr. Aiken's client as a partner. Judgment in favor of Mr. Aiken's client for several hundred thousand dollars.

  • Represented an apple grower against a nursery with allegations that apple trees provided by the nursery did not meet the characteristics represented by the nursery. Verdict for the grower for several hundred thousand dollars. 

  • Represented a homeowner being sued by other homeowners for breach of covenants. Plaintiffs were attempting to force Mr. Aiken's client to remove several feet from the top of their house which would have cost many thousands of dollars. After trial the court ruled in favor of the other homeowners. The matter was reversed on appeal and Mr. Aiken's client was awarded all of their attorney fees at both the trial level and appeal level. 

  • Represented a manufacturer of cattle trailers and other trailers in a product liability case where a person using the trailer was injured. Defense Verdict. 

  • Mr. Aiken has also represented numerous health care providers in administrative actions and investigations primarily involving unprofessional conduct.  He has been involved in approximately 100 such matters.  In one recent matter, a physician unquestionably violated the standard of care and injured the patient.  After the Washington Medical Commission commenced an investigation, a plan was devised that the physician would be very pro-active in demonstrating that he was aware of the problem that arose in the case and was doing a number of remedial measures to improve his practice.  Also, that he was providing information to his colleagues and hospital where he worked providing educational seminars.  Because of these pro-active measures, the WMC did not take any action against the physician.

  • In another action, the WMC originally filed a Statement of Charges against a physician.  Mr. Aiken provided the WMC additional information, and it decided to withdraw the Statement of Charges and not take any action against the physician.

  • Mr. Aiken also has extensive appellate experience.  He has argued in front of the Washington Supreme Court on six occasions.  He has argued in front of the Washington Court of Appeals in over 28 cases.  The majority of the appeals involved the other party appealing summary judgment dismissal of their case.

Mr. Aiken has also been involved in numerous motions.  It is estimated that Mr. Aiken has participated in over 100 summary judgment motions within the last several years.  

In 1999, Mr. Aiken represented a Yakima hospital in what is believed to be the first physician Fair Hearing Procedure that occurred in Yakima.  Since that time, he has represented physicians, nurses, and other healthcare providers in numerous OQAC, NQAC and other DOH proceedings.  This includes prevailing at Medical Quality Commission trials.    



Mr. Aiken has been continuously selected to the Washington Super Lawyers for 10 consecutive years.  Each year no more than five percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by the research team at Super Lawyers to receive this honor.

 

Mr. Aiken is also a member of the Defense Research Institute. 

 

Representation
 

Mr. Aiken has more experience representing hospitals than any other lawyer in Central Washington.  At times, he has represented all three hospitals in the Tri-Cities - Lourdes, Kadlec, and Trios.  When Trios was insured by CNA, CNA selected Mr. Aiken as the hospital's medical malpractice defense lawyer.  Mr. Aiken has represented several hospitals in the last several years including: 

  • Sunnyside Community Hospital (Now Astria Hospital)

  • Yakima Regional Medical Center (Now Astria Hospital)

  • Toppenish Community Hospital (Now Astria Hospital)

  • Lourdes Medical Center

  • Kadlec Regional Medical Center

  • Samaritan Hospital

  • Sacred Heart Medical Center

  • Central Washington Hospital

  • Quincy Valley Medical Center

  • Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital

  • Kennewick General Hospital (Now Trios)

  • Odessa Public Hospital District

Mr. Aiken has represented numerous health care providers in investigations and hearings involving the following entities:

  • MQAC

  • OQAC

  • NQAC

  • DOH

Mr. Aiken has represented several hospitals in Physician Fair Hearing proceedings. 

Appellate Advocacy 
 
Washington Supreme Court

  • Food Services vs. Royal Heights, 123 Wn.2d 779 (1994)

  • Buchanan v. Simplot, 134 Wn.2d 673 (1998) (assisted with draft)

  • Western Farm Services, Inc. v. Olsen, 151 Wn.2d 645 (2004)

  • Mohr v. Grantham, 172 Wn.2d 844 (2011)

  • Cornu-Labat v. Hospital Dist. No. 2 Grant County, 177 Wn.2d 221 (2013) 

  • Fast v. Kennewick General Hospital, 188 Wn. App. 43 (2015)

  • Frausto v. Yakima HMA, LLC, 188 Wn.2d 227 (2017)

Washington Court of Appeals and Other Appeals

  • Davis v. Ellensburg, 869 F.2d 1230 (9th Cir. 1989)

  • Thomas v. Wilfac, Inc., 65 Wn. App. 255 (1992)

  • Adams v. Allen, 56 Wn. App. 383, 783 P.2d 635 (1989) (prevailed in part)

  • Cascade Trailer Court v. Beeson, 50 Wn. App. 678, 749 P.2d 761, review denied, 110 Wn.2d 1030 (1988)

  • Federated Service Insurance v. R.E.W., Inc., 53 Wn. App. 730, 770 P.2d 654 (1989)

  • Marley Orchards v. Travelers Indemnity, 50 Wn. App. 801, 750 P.2d 1294 (1988)

  • Hill v. Kennewick General Hospital, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 11094-0-III), decided 1992, unpublished

  • Smith v. Kennewick General Hospital, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 8719-1-III), decided 1988, unpublished

  • Ditlefsen v. Wondrack, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 9564-9-III) decided 1989. unpublished

  • Dolsen Leasing Company v. Copeland, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 8464-7-III), decided 1988, unpublished (prevailed in part)

  • Vintage Valley, Inc. vs. Quail Run Vintners, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 11200-4-III), decided 1993, unpublished

  • Robinson v. Pemco Ins. Co., 71 Wn. App. 746 (1993)

  • Tennyson v. Plum Creek Timber Co., 73 Wn. App. 550 (1994)

  • Zirkle v. Perleberg, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 12232 8 III),  decided  1994, unpublished

  • Loosveldt v. Paine, Hamblen, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 14490-9-III), decided 1996, unpublished

  • Finke v. Liu, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 15579-0-III), decided 1997, unpublished

  • Wicklander v. Our Lady of Lourdes Health Center, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals, Cause No. 17610-0-III), decided 1999, unpublished

  • Shupe v. Perry, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 17015-2-III), decided  1999, unpublished - Shupe I

  • Nguyen v. Sacred Heart Medical Center, 97 Wn. App. 728 (1999)

  • Shupe v. Perry, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 18146-4-III), decided 2000, unpublished - Shupe II

  • Newby v. Kadlec, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 18300-9-III), decided 2000, unpublished, Court's own motion on the merits

  • Judy v. Hanford Environmental Health Foundation, 106 Wn. App. 26 (2001)

  • Mayo v. Hiersche, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 19735-2-III), decided 2002, unpublished, Court denied petition for discretionary review of order granting summary judgment in favor of our client

  • Everett v. Central Washington Hospital, (Division II Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 25985-1-II), decided 2002, shortly before oral argument, Plaintiff dismissed appeal of order granting summary judgment in favor of our client

  • Murillo v. Lourdes Medical Center, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 24107-6-III), decided 2005, unpublished, Court denied petition for discretionary review of order granting summary judgment in favor of our client

  • Blevins v. Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital,​ (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 25059-8-III), decided 2006, unpublished, Court denied petition for discretionary review of order granting partial summary judgment in favor of our client

  • Amiri v. Central Family Medicine et al., (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 25329-5-III), decided 2007 unpublished

  • Woody v. Stapp, 146 Wn. App. 16 (2008)

  • Mack v. Armstrong, 147 Wn. App. 522 (2008)

  • Rounds v. Nellcor Puritan Bennett, 147 Wn. App. 155 (2008), rev. denied, 165 Wn.2d 1047 (2009)

  • Fiscus Freight v. Universal Insurance, 53 Wn. App. 777 (1989)

  • Swiger v. Wiltco Manufacturing, Inc., (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 81472-7-III), decided 1987, unpublished

  • Howard v. Apple Tree Turf Racing Associates, Inc., (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 11161-0-III), 1991, case settled after submitting brief of Appellant/Defendant

  • Holden v. Beavert, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 15529-3-III) decided 1998, unpublished

  • Whiteside v. Lukson, 89 Wn. App. 109 (1998)

  • IM EX Trading Company v. Raad, 92 Wn. App. 529 (1998)

  • Coleman v. Perry, (Washington Supreme Court Cause No. 66538-9, direct review to Supreme  Court, case settled just prior to scheduled oral arguments 1999)

  • Richter v. Rossmeisl, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 20110-4-III) decided 2002, unpublished

  • Mann v. Household Finance Corp., 109 Wn. App. 387 (2001)

  • Lizotte v. Schumacher, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals, 2003 Westlaw 827623) decided 2003, unpublished

  • Lomax v. Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No.  25931-5-III), decided 2008, unpublished

  • Matson Fruit v. Brandt’s Fruit Tree, (Division III Washington Court of Appeals Cause No.  23922-5-III), 2005, case settled after submitting brief

  • Geffe v. Providence Yakima Medical Center, (Division III, Washington Court of Appeals Cause No.  283071-III), 2009, court granted Motion for Discretionary Review, case settled

  • Wilson v. Sunnyside Community Hospital, 162 Wn. App. 731 (2011)

  • OB-1 v. Pinson and Vinson, (Division III, Washington Court of Appeals, Cause No. 29077-8, unpublished (2011))

  • Clayton v. Clayton, C., (Division III, Washington Court of Appeals Cause No. 13334-6), decided  1994, unpublished

  • Diaz v. Sunnyside Community Hospital, (Division I, Court of Appeals, Cause No. 64894-2-I) Motion  for Discretionary Review (2010)

  • Anderson v. Central Washington Hospital, et al., (Division I, Court of Appeals, Cause No. 69170-8-I) Motion for Discretionary Review (2013)

  • Blum v. Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital at Pasco, WL 4676036 (2013)

  • Dixon v. Yakima HMA, LLC, WL 6407712 (2013)

  • Lennox v. Lourdes Health Network, 195 Wn. App. 1003 (2016)

 

 

  • November 2016: Presentation to Nurses and Hospital Staff RE: Medical Charting

  • March 2017: Presentation to Lourdes Medical Staff RE: Tips for Avoiding Malpractice Claims

  • July 2017: Presentation to Mental Health Providers RE: Third-Party Reporting Under the Recent Volk Decision

 

Presentations
 
Areas of Practice

 

Medical Malpractice

Commercial Litigation

Products Liability

Premises Liability

​Employment Law

Appellate Practice

Education

Washington State University, B.A. 1981



  • Summa Cum Laude

  • Phi Beta Kappa

University of Oregon, J.D. 1984

  • ​Order of the Coif

  • American Jurisprudence Award: Trusts and Estates; Secured Land Transactions

Admitted to Practice

State Courts

  • Washington

  • Oregon

Federal Trial Courts

  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Washington

  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington

  • U.S. District Court, District of Oregon

  • U.S. Claims Court

  • U.S. District Court, District of Arizona

Federal Courts of Appeal

  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

 

2010 - present

2010 - present