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Cap on Non-Economic Damages Declared Unconstitutional

In a unanimous decision, the Georgia Supreme Court declared the cap on non-economic damages in verdicts in medical malpractice cases unconstitutional. The $350,000 cap on awards was the heart of the 2005 attempt at tort reform by the Georgia legislature. Such a cap, according to the Court, violates the right to a jury trial as guaranteed under the Georgia Constitution. The 2005 law’s cap on damage awards “clearly nullifies the jury’s findings of fact regarding damages and thereby undermines the jury’s basic function,” Chief Justice Carol Hunstein wrote for the court. Moreover, “[t]he very existence of the caps, in any amount, is violative of the right to trial by jury.”

The Chicago medical malpractice attorneys at Levin & Perconti support this decision as it protects their clients and patients everywhere. Fortunately, last month, the Illinois Supreme Court declared unconstitutional a $500,000 cap against doctors and a $1 million cap against hospitals. The medical malpractice attorneys at Levin & Perconti constantly work to protect their clients’ constitutional rights to a jury trial and their clients’ rights to achieve medical malpractice verdicts that will fairly compensate them for the loss they suffered.

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