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Florida’s Attorney General wants damages caps in place

Medical malpractice can devastate an individual’s health and destroy the victim’s financial well-being. This is why lawsuits alleging hospital negligence are so important. If successful, such a claim can not only bring compensation to the victim and family members, but it might also deter other medical professionals from committing negligence, thereby protecting others. A winning case can give a family the financial relief it needs to focus on recovering physically and emotionally.

However, for a long time in Florida medical malpractice damages that were recoverable through a personal injury lawsuit were capped. However, this past summer the Court of Appeal found the limits to be unconstitutional, perhaps because the Florida Supreme Court found caps in wrongful death cases to be unconstitutional. Now, the medical malpractice cap may be headed to the Florida Supreme Court, and the state’s Attorney General is urging the Court to uphold the limits.

One reason some politicians, including former Governor Jeb Bush, want limits on non-economic damages is because, they claim, it raises medical malpractice insurance costs too much. The Court of Appeal, however, found that denying medical malpractice victims full damages violated equal protection since similar caps were lifted for wrongful death cases.

Those who are considering filing a medical malpractice claim may want to keep an eye out for any developments regarding this issue. If the caps are lifted for good, then victims and their families may be fully compensated for their pain and suffering. If not, then several factors may be considered when making a damages determination.

Source: The St. Augustine Record, “Bondi defends medical malpractice limits,” Jim Saunders, Dec. 16, 2015

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