The insurance and medical lobbies are both very powerful in the United States, which is the primary reason that more than 30 U.S. states have caps on the damages a victim of medical malpractice can recover. In states where this cap exists, the jury’s judgment is overridden by a statutory limitation on the damages that may be awarded to a victim.
New York Has No Cap on Medical Malpractice Awards
Fortunately, New York is one of the minority of states that does not cap medical malpractice awards, either overall or with regard to non-economic damages. Instead, the judge or jury is free to make an award based on the circumstances of the case, including how egregious the physician’s or hospital’s negligence was and how severely the victim and his or her family were impacted.
With the right medical malpractice attorney, that means an excellent chance of receiving a fair recovery for both economic and non-economic damages.
Economic damages are actual financial costs. Some of the most common include:
- Lost wages
- Ongoing medical expenses
- Cost of accommodations, such as modifications to a home to make it wheelchair accessible
Non-economic damages are intended to compensate the victim—or, in the case of a wrongful death claim, the victim’s family—for intangible yet very real losses. The most commonly recognized of these is “pain and suffering.” It is these non-economic damages that states most often cap, frequently at $250,000.
The Damaging Impact of Damages Caps
In states that have imposed caps, the impact on a person who has been injured as a result of medical malpractice or a family who has lost a loved one to malpractice can be devastating. Just last month, a Maryland jury awarded $10 million to a widowed mother of eight after determining that negligent administration of a medication had caused her husband’s extremely painful death.
Maryland’s medical malpractice cap resulted in the award being reduced by more than 90%, to $906,250.
Medical Malpractice Attorneys Can Protect Victims’ Rights in New York
In addition to caps on the damages a medical malpractice victim (or the victim’s family in a wrongful death case based on medical malpractice) may recover, states create many obstacles for those who have been harmed by negligent physicians, hospitals or other medical providers.
In some states, those unfavorable conditions result in the vast majority of medical malpractice claims being lost or dismissed, with many others never filed due to the hostile environment for medical malpractice victims.
Without the limitation of medical malpractice caps, the attorneys at Dansker & Aspromonte have been able to obtain very favorable settlements and verdicts for clients injured by a medical professional’s negligence, including:
- A $50 million settlement for a child who required extensive rehabilitation after having received an overdose of anesthetic during routine surgery to repair a droopy eyelid;
- $2.75 million settlement for a man who lost his lower leg after medical providers failed to diagnose compartment syndrome following a gunshot wound; and
- $7.55 million for a sanitation worker whose injuries proved fatal after treatment was unreasonably delayed.
If you have been injured, your injuries complicated or your recovery delayed by the negligence of a medical professional or medical facility, or if you have lost a loved one to medical malpractice, contact us as soon as possible to learn more about how we can help you get the compensation you deserve.