Are there caps on malpractice cases in Florida?

Florida law places caps on noneconomic damages suffered due to medical malpractice in the state. Noneconomic damages include such things as pain and suffering, impairment, disfigurement and loss of the ability to enjoy one’s life.

Economic damages do not have a cap. They include damages for 80 percent of earnings lost, both currently and in the future, and current and future medical expenses incurred due to the injury.

The caps on noneconomic damages for negligent practitioners of $500,000 per claim unless the injury results in a permanent vegetative state or death. In that case, the cap is $1,000,000. For nonpractitioner defendants, the cap is $750,000 for each claimant or $1.5 million if the injury resulted in death or a permanent vegetative state. Negligent practitioners who cause injury while providing emergency care have damages capped at $150,000, while nonpractitioner claims for emergency care are capped at $750,000. When the person injured is a Medicaid recipient, the caps on damages per claimant is reduced to $300,000 for practitioners. Medicaid patient claims are capped at $200,000 unless the plaintiff proves by clear and convincing evidence that the practitioner acted in a wrongful manner.

Unfortunately, medical malpractice occurs far too often in Florida. Seriously injured victims or the families of those wrongfully killed or left in permanent vegetative states have potential remedies available to them through filing a civil lawsuit. Victims and families may be able to recover both economic and noneconomic damages. Potential plaintiffs may wish to speak with a personal injury attorney who takes medical malpractice cases. He or she may be able to review the particular circumstances and medical reports of a given case to determine what claims and damages may be available.

SourceThe 2014 Florida Statutes, “MEDICAL MALPRACTICE AND RELATED MATTERS“, October 21, 2014