The Florida Second District Court of Appear recently urged the Florida Supreme Court to revisit the question of whether a largely debunked “insurance crisis” still justifies limiting – or altogether prohibiting – damages to survivors in some medical malpractice wrongful death cases. As we will further detail in our post, the FL 2nd DCA sent a certified question to the Florida supreme court that centers around FL statute 768.21 and the Florida wrongful death damages cap.
As our Fort Myers medical malpractice attorneys can explain, state law currently bars adult children from recovering any non-economic damages in wrongful death medical malpractice lawsuits; this specific Florida wrongful death damages cap can leave families suffering and give bad doctors a free pass for wrongdoing. The effect of our law is that a negligent doctor or hospital may be held liable to pay non-economic damages for a patient who lives, has minor children and/or a surviving spouse, but not if that same patient dies with only adult children as survivors. This raises equal protection of constitutional concerns.
The 2nd District Court of Appeal has asked the state high court to reconsider this, calling it “a matter of great importance,” after ruling it had no choice but to dismiss the wrongful death lawsuit filed by the surviving adult children of a woman who allegedly died as a result of medical malpractice. Continue reading