Indiana’s state legislature has proposed an increase in the state’s cap on medical malpractice payments. The proposed bill would increase the state’s limits on how much compensation malpractice victims can receive. The new bill would increase the limit to $1.65 million. According to one new source, if passed, the increase would be the first in 17 years. In addition, the bill would increase the limit on what a health care provider must pay from $250,000 to $450,000. If an award exceeds that, the remainder of the money is paid by the state. The proposed bill would also limit increases to every four years based on the national inflation rate.
Indiana’s Senate President Pro Tem David Long said that he believes the cap has helped limit the state’s medical costs but also that it needs to increase to meet growing costs. Also, the current limit is being challenged in court, and Long commented that he believes that not allowing for limit increases could mean that the current state law would be deemed unconstitutional by a state court. Some other states’ caps have also been found unconstitutional.
Medical Malpractice Damages Caps
Medical malpractice damages caps limit the amount of money a plaintiff can receive from a medical malpractice lawsuit. Generally, the caps place a limit only on non-economic damages. Economic damages include the cost of medical bills and lost wages, whereas non-economic damages include pain and suffering, mental distress, and loss of companionship. However, some states have laws on all types of damages, including both non-economic and economic damages. Indiana’s current and proposed law includes all types of damages.
The rationale behind medical malpractice caps is to limit the financial burden on the state and to minimize drains on the economy. Additionally, some say that caps promote cost stability in the health care system and protect doctors from high insurance rates, ensuring that doctors are willing to practice in the state. However, caps are not without their problems and criticisms. For example, many successful medical malpractice plaintiffs are not fairly or fully compensated, due to the caps on the amount of damages they are able to receive.
The Increase Would Help Victims Obtain More Fair Compensation
Patients who have been injured or killed due to medical malpractice in Indiana would be able to obtain more money under the new law. In addition, proponents of the bill argue that doctors need to accept responsibility for their mistakes, since patients are the ones who suffer. Some argue that there should never be a cap on damages, since it minimizes the responsibility for harm that they caused.
Have You Been Injured Due to Medical Malpractice?
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