Last week, the Florida Supreme Court overturned existing legislation placing caps on how much medical malpractice plaintiffs are entitled to in pain-and-suffering damages.
In 2003, the controversial cap was applied to non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases to address a growing “medical malpractice insurance crisis”. It seems this decision remained in controversy; the legislation was only overruled in a 4-3 decision.
What does this mean for Florida medical malpractice?
Under the 2003 legislation brought in under Gov. Jeb Bush, the damages caps were applied in different amounts, depending on the nature of the suit, number of claimants, and types of defendants.
The Florida Supreme court thought differently, finding no proof of a connection between caps and a reduction of insurance premium costs. It stated in Its ruling,”…arbitrary reduction of compensation without regard to the severity of the injury does not bear a rational relationship to the Legislature’s stated interest in addressing the medical malpractice crisis”.
You may know someone affected by medical negligence and struggled to obtain restitution.
Due to the caps, some claimants were even having trouble finding personal injury attorneys to take their case. Medical malpractice cases can generate high litigation costs, and with limits on damages, attorneys could not be properly compensated for time.
This ruling will affect every malpractice case, going forward. Those who support the ruling believe it will bring proper justice for many claimants who have had to settle for less than what they deserved in pain-and-suffering damages. You should not have to suffer at the hands of medical negligence. If you have experienced irreparable harm stemming from malpractice, you are entitled to relief.
To learn more about the Florida Supreme Court’s cap ruling, check out the Insurance Journal article. Contact our team with questions on filing a medical malpractice claim or if you want to know more about personal injury representation.