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The Truth About Access to Justice and Medical Insurance Rates

The Huffington Post recently included an article from the Center for Justice and Democracy that sheds light on the reality behind victim’s access to the court system following medical malpractice and medical insurance rates.

Most are aware of the claims made about rising insurance rates for medical care providers and the connection to medical malpractice lawsuits. Lawyers and victims’ right advocates have been vilified in some circles for the apparent increase in medical malpractice insurance rates. Many claim that jury verdicts and victimized Americans patients who seek accountability for negligent doctors are the true culprits behind a problematic rise in insurance costs. The advocates of this view are the ones urging that access to the justice system be cut-off to regular Americans. Unfortunately, in many areas the changes have already been made and consumers have lost legal rights.

However, looking at the insurance rates over the an extended period of time reveals clearly that rates have gone up and down in several cycles over the past decades, irrespective of jury awards or victims’ lawsuits.

The reality is that insurance companies are exempt from anti-trust laws, meaning that they are allowed to collectively raise rates. In that way, the industry fluctuates between soft and hard markets. In soft market times, the companies are fiercely competitive, lowering rates. In hard market times, the companies collectively increase rates.

The fact remains that there is little connection between these market fluctuations and changes in the number of medical malpractice lawsuits or the right of victims to seek justice.

Victims deserve a fair day in court-there is nothing to fear about allowing justice to play out exactly how it was intended. Our Chicago medical malpractice lawyers at Levin & Perconti will never give up the fight for accountable medical care, equal protection, and logical improvements in our nation’s healthcare system. We will continue to stand up against corporate interests that seek to take away average Americans right to justice.

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