In our continuing effort to educate the public about the harm caused by "tort reform," CJ&D has developed several educational websites called "Caps Harm ...". The following are examples. Contact us for more information about starting a Caps Harm ... website for your state..
If you go to the hospital or see a doctor in California and you end up badly injured because the doctor was incompetent or the hospital was unsafe, you should be able to do something about it. You should be able to take the health care provider to court and be fully compensated. But in California, you can’t. That’s because 35-years ago, California enacted one of the harshest laws in the nation limiting the legal rights of everyday Californians. This law is called “MICRA.”
MICRA harms patients, has done nothing to help doctors with their insurance problems, and makes it very difficult to hold negligent doctors and hospitals responsible, leading to a dangerous patient safety environment in California.
If you or a family member are badly hurt because a big company acted recklessly, you should be able to take that company to court and be fully compensated. But in Colorado, you can’t. That’s because Colorado lawmakers have enacted some of the harshest laws in the nation limiting the rights of everyday Coloradoans.
In 1976, Nebraska’s medical and insurance lobbies argued that establishing “caps” or severe overall limits on compensation to injured patients was the only way to reduce periodically high malpractice insurance rates and keep doctors practicing. As a result of this lobbying, Nebraska succumbed to political pressure and enacted an overall “cap” on compensation for injured patients. But unlike the law in almost every other state, Nebraska’s cap, now at $1,750,000, is the total limit that any family may recover – even when a catastrophically injured child needing a lifetime of care is involved. This “one-size-fits-all” cap applies no matter how much merit a case has; or, the extent of the misconduct by the hospital, doctor or HMO; or, the severity of an injury. (See stories of Nebraska families harmed by the cap.) Nebraska doctors also benefit tremendously from an Excess Liability Fund, also established in 1976, which pays compensation that exceeds a doctor’s insurance policy. In 2010, this Fund, the assets of which total $86 million and which accumulated $8 million in investment income last year, paid out only $5.5 million in claims.