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Bulwer v. Mount Auburn Hospital, et al. (Lawyers Weekly No. 11-118-14)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA, 02108-1750; (617) 557-1030; SJCReporter@sjc.state.ma.us   11-P-1583                                        Appeals Court   BERNARD BULWER  vs.  MOUNT AUBURN HOSPITAL & others.[1] No. 11-P-1583 Middlesex.     November 26, 2012. – September 24, 2014.   Present:  Berry, Kafker, Meade, Sikora, & Wolohojian, JJ.[2]     Hospital, Appointment to staff.  Anti-Discrimination Law, Race.  Employment, Discrimination, Retaliation.  Contract, Employment, With hospital, Performance and breach, Interference with contractual relations.  Libel and Slander.  Unlawful Interference.  Practice, Civil, Summary judgment.       Civil action commenced in the Superior Court Department on February 22, 2008.   The case was heard by S. Jane Haggerty, J., on a motion for summary judgment.     Sara Discepolo for the plaintiff. Robert R. Hamel, Jr., for the defendants.     WOLOHOJIAN, J.  The plaintiff, Dr. Bernard Bulwer, an experienced physician and a black man from Belize, became a first-year resident at Mount Auburn Hospital (hospital) in August, 2005.  He joined the residency program under a one-year contract, with the possibility of advancement to a second year of residency upon successful completion of the first.  Eight months into the program, he was told that the hospital would not extend a second-year contract to him but that he would be allowed to continue his residency through the end of his first year.  One month later, however, he was terminated.  This suit followed, in which Bulwer alleges discrimination and retaliation based on his race and national origin in violation of G. L. c. 151B, breach of contract, defamation, and tortious interference with his contractual relationship with the hospital.[3]  Summary judgment entered in favor of the defendants on all counts.  We conclude that the summary judgment record sufficed to entitle Bulwer to have a jury decide his discrimination and breach of contract claims, but that summary judgment was properly entered on his remaining claims.  Accordingly, we affirm in part and reverse in part. 1.  The summary judgment record.  In reviewing a grant of summary judgment, we assess the record de novo and take the facts, together with all reasonable inferences to be drawn from them, in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party.  Godfrey v. Globe Newspaper Co., 457 Mass. 113, 119 (2010).  “[T]he court does not pass upon the credibility of witnesses or the weight of the evidence [or] make [its] own decision of facts.”  Shawmut Worcester County Bank, N.A. v. Miller, 398 Mass. 273, 281 (1986), quoting from Attorney Gen. v. Bailey, […]

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Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - September 24, 2014 at 3:57 pm

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