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Are there caps on noneconomic damages in medical malpractice cases in Florida?

by | Sep 17, 2020

Medical and Professional Malpractice (1)

Noneconomic damages are more commonly known as “pain and suffering” damages.

The Florida laws governing noneconomic damages caps for medical malpractice cases have a long and tortuous history dating back to 2003. The worst part about their storied past is that the current status of the noneconomic damages caps is still in flux.

  • 2003: Florida passed legislation setting caps on noneconomic damages at $500,000 (or $1m for wrongful death). These statutes were in effect and untouched until 2014.
  • 2014: The Florida Supreme Court ruled that these caps were unconstitutional, but only in wrongful death medical malpractice cases.
  • 2017: The Florida Supreme Court extended this 2014 ruling to all noneconomic damages in medical malpractice cases (N. Broward Hosp. Dist. v. Kalitan, 219 So. 3d 49 (Fla. 2017)).
  • 2020: Despite the court ruling these caps unconstitutional, the relevant Florida laws remain unchanged. If you seek out the official Florida statutes, you will find that the pre-2014 damage caps on noneconomic damages are still listed (Fla. Stat. §766.118(2)-(6)).

In short, despite the various rulings and hubbub, it is likely that noneconomic damages in your medical malpractice lawsuit will be capped at $500,000 for medical practitioners.

Are You The Victim of Medical Malpractice?

The nuances of the noneconomic damages caps require a professional medical malpractice attorney to decipher. If you believe you have suffered harm from medical malpractice, please get in touch with us today to discuss your legal options.

Wrongful Death in Florida (1)

Noneconomic damages are more commonly known as “pain and suffering” damages.

The Florida laws governing noneconomic damages caps for medical malpractice cases have a long and tortuous history dating back to 2003. The worst part about their storied past is that the current status of the noneconomic damages caps is still in flux.

  • 2003: Florida passed legislation setting caps on noneconomic damages at $500,000 (or $1m for wrongful death). These statutes were in effect and untouched until 2014.
  • 2014: The Florida Supreme Court ruled that these caps were unconstitutional, but only in wrongful death medical malpractice cases.
  • 2017: The Florida Supreme Court extended this 2014 ruling to all noneconomic damages in medical malpractice cases (N. Broward Hosp. Dist. v. Kalitan, 219 So. 3d 49 (Fla. 2017)).
  • 2020: Despite the court ruling these caps unconstitutional, the relevant Florida laws remain unchanged. If you seek out the official Florida statutes, you will find that the pre-2014 damage caps on noneconomic damages are still listed (Fla. Stat. §766.118(2)-(6)).

In short, despite the various rulings and hubbub, it is likely that noneconomic damages in your medical malpractice lawsuit will be capped at $500,000 for medical practitioners.

Are You The Victim of Medical Malpractice?

The nuances of the noneconomic damages caps require a professional medical malpractice attorney to decipher. If you believe you have suffered harm from medical malpractice, please get in touch with us today to discuss your legal options.

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Other FAQs!

Don’t miss these other FAQs from the lawyers at Personal Injury & Accident Law Center, your go-to resource for information about personal injury cases in Boca Raton. 

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