Medical Liability Update


Professional Liability & Risk Management Update eNewsletter 

NYS Medical Liability Current Status & Recent Developments

Physician Efforts Urged to Defeat Liability Expansion Legislation

All physicians are urged to review and contact their legislators to oppose legislation aggressively sought by trial lawyers to increase liability exposure against physicians and drive up the already unsustainably high cost of liability insurance coverage. As a result of the failure of policymakers to sufficiently address this problem, physicians in many areas of New York State pay premiums that are among the very highest in the country. With medical liability carriers requesting further premium increases for the 2012-13 policy year beginning July 1, enactment of any of the below listed bills would, exacerbate the already serious access-to-care problems that exist within New York’s fragile health care system.

The bills under consideration include legislation that would:

  • Create a “date of discovery” rule for the statute of limitations (S.744, Fuschillo/A.1056, Weinstein) – Estimated to increase premiums by 15%.
  • Expand “wrongful death” damages (S.551, DeFrancisco/A.1001, Weinstein) – Estimated to increase premiums by 53%.
  • Eliminate the limitations on contingency fees (S.554, DeFrancisco) – Estimated to increase premiums by over 10%.
  • Prohibit ex-parte interview of plaintiff’s treating physician (S. 1046, DeFrancisco/A.2365 -A, Lancman)
  • Require that, when a medical liability lawsuit is brought against two or more defendants, a non-settling defendant must elect prior to trial to reduce their liability by either 1) the balance of the jury award to the plaintiff or 2) by an equitable share determined by the jury (S.887, DeFrancisco/A.1085, Weinstein). (AUSTER, DEARS, CONWAY)


Medical Liability Report




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