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Case Law Update: Medical Malpractice Caps Deemed Unconstitutional in Illinois

The landmark Illinois Supreme Court Case of Lebron, a Minor v. Gottlieb Memorial Hospital was decided on Feb. 2, 2010. The Illinois case decided that damage caps on medical malpractice case awards for noneconomic damages, such as pain and suffering, was in direct violation of the separation of powers. The Illinois Supreme Court found that the caps were an interfereance with the judicial branch’s authority to reduce verdicts. Since the noneconomic damages provision is not severable from the statute, the Court found that the entire statute is invalid. This important case is a victory for those who value patient’s rights and will have a great effect on Illinois medical malpractice law.