California Medical Malpractice Damage Cap Law Under Fire

California residents are fighting back against a damages cap that they say unfairly limits the compensation victims of medical malpractice can receive. Since 1975, with the passage of the Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act (MICRA), damages for malpractice have been capped at $250,000, without any adjustments for inflation.

Victims of malpractice across the state have railed against the cap, calling for legislators to raise it to $1.1 million and allow it to automatically adjust to inflation. Former AOL and NetZero executive Bob Pack, along with other consumer rights advocates, has created a ballot initiative to increase the damages cap, which he says is so low that lawyers often refuse to accept medical malpractice cases because they are unprofitable.

“The most you can still collect is $250,000, [but] you can’t even get to court for $250,000,” Pack said. “Therein lies the catch-22 that needs to be adjusted for inflation.”

Doctors and medical professionals with the California Medical Association claim updating MICRA will only serve to raise medical costs by increasing fees, and will not improve the quality of care.

Lawmakers hope to end the controversy and draft a solution before the legislative session ends in September.

5 Responses to “California Medical Malpractice Damage Cap Law Under Fire”

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