AIA Applauds Wis. Supreme Court’s Med-Mal Ruling

July 6, 2004

The American Insurance Association (AIA) today applauded the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s unanimous decision affirming the constitutionality of non-economic damage caps in wrongful death medical malpractice cases.

“The court’s decision is welcome because it validates balanced medical malpractice laws the legislature put in place years ago that have created a stable, predictable medical liability market for doctors, insurers and all Wisconsin citizens,” said Sean McManamy, AIA vice president, Midwest region. “Neighboring states experiencing a medical malpractice crisis, like Illinois, should recognize the significance of this decision, and take steps now to stabilize their market.”

The Wisconsin Supreme Court concluded that “the limit on non-economic damages in a medical malpractice wrongful death cases is constitutional.” The court also reversed a Circuit Court decision that allowed plaintiffs to recover non-economic damages for both medical negligence and wrongful death. The Supreme Court concluded that “there is a single cap on non-economic damages recoverable . . . when a patient dies.”

“Wisconsin is one of only a handful of states considered by the American Medical Association to have a stable medical malpractice insurance market. This decision will help ensure it stays that way,” added McManamy.

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