“Tort reform” debate heats up in Illinois

The debate surrounding “tort reform” and medical malpractice caps is heating up again after a Cook County judge declared capping certain damages for patients unconstitutional. In 2005, an Illinois state law was enacted that narrowly limited medical malpractice lawsuit awards for non-economic damages for pain and suffering. The law limited the damages to $1 million for hospitals and $500,000 for physicians. There is no ceiling for damages regarding medical care and lost wages, which typically make up the highest part of the award.

“Tort reform” advocates claim that medical malpractice caps encourage more doctors to practice in the State. However, as we know, high insurance premiums are driven by greedy insurance companies. The Illinois State Supreme Court will rule on the issue.

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