Tuesday, April 01, 2003

The Oregonian opposes federal tort limitation legislation, and says leave it up to the individual states:
But an artificial limit isn't the right answer. Not only has it been soundly rejected by Oregon voters, but it also would put the civil courts out of reach for most consumers. Lawyers can't afford to pursue contingency-fee civil lawsuits that call for expensive research and expert testimony unless they have a chance to recover their costs.

Further, it's not entirely clear that damage awards are the sole drivers of premium increases.

Unfortunately, the editorial also proposes, in a shot from the hip, "rational analysis that connects awards to the degree of negligence involved." Let's not forget that the more serious the injuries as a result of malpractice, the higher the verdict should be. And, how does one determine the "degree" of negligence in any particular situation? I like our current setup better: The question of deviation from standard of care [negligence] is basically a yes/no question. If "yes," then consideration is given as to whether the negligence caused the injury, and the degree of injury. What's wrong with this procedure? It makes sense to me

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