Illinois Supreme Court Finds Caps on Damages To Be Unconstitutional
February 4, 2010
Much to the delight of all victims of medical malpractice and consumers in Illinois in general, the Supreme Court found that caps on non-economic damages as legislated by Illinois lawmakers was an unconstitutional interference of the legislative branch with the judicial branch of the government. This is a great victory for all victims of medical malpractice in Illinois. regrettably, the fight does not stop here and will now be focused, at least for us, to the Federal arena where Tort Reform is still a threat to all consumers and victims of malpractice.
The Illinois Supreme Court struck down the state’s medical malpractice law today, saying it violates separation of powers by allowing lawmakers to interfere with a judge’s ability to reduce verdicts.
The much-anticipated ruling, which challenged the constitutionality of damage caps for doctors and hospitals, is being watched closely by the health care industry and employers that see caps on damages as a way to tame rising health care costs.
The ruling could figure in the national health care debate of stalled health care legislation. In the U.S. Senate where Republicans have opposed existing health care reform legislation, the GOP has been vocal about the need for tort reform and caps on damages.