Medical Malpractice Lawyers and Litigation NOT Breaking Healthcare’s Bank

medical malpractice attorneys negligence new jersey philadelphia tort reformHealth Affairs, the leading journal of health policy and research, founded in 1981 to support health policy education in the medical community domestically and worldwide, recently published the results of a study involving the cost of medical malpractice to the public. This well respected organization demonstrated that the “tort reformists” claim that medical malpractice litigation adds enormous costs to healthcare is simply a myth.   In fact,  Health Affairs estimated that less than 2.5% of all healthcare costs in the United States are in any way associated to medical malpractice litigations.  That’s two and half pennies out of each dollar.

Frivolous Medical Malpractice Defense Costs to the United States

Health and Human Services data shows that in 2008, the United States spent $7,681 per person on healthcare related costs.  Less than $200 of this sum is in any way related to medical malpractice law suits.  Although the “tort reformist” likes to blame this cost on frivolous lawsuits, what we never hear about are “frivolous defenses.”  Someone’s mother, father,  son, or daughter is injured because a medical provider took short cuts or didn’t follow basic safety rules of medicine.  Instead of accepting responsibility and making up for the medical mistake,  many times a medical malpractice insurance company will decide to mount a frivolous defense.  It pays thousands and thousands of dollars to high-priced lawyers and medical “experts” to fight the case.   Deny and Defend – even when decency and economics demand fair compensation. The family comes into court with a fair and legitimate case  and a jury turns them away with nothing. This happens every day – and it adds to this cost of health care

Medical Malpractice Victims vs. Tort Reformists

Tort reformists (and the insurance lobbyists who promote them) like to spin tales about the astronomical costs of medical malpractice litigation to the taxpayers and medical providers of America, but the Health Affairs study negates those accusations. It seems that the only people paying heavily for medical malpractice are those who commit it: negligent doctors and irresponsible pharmaceutical companies. Tort Reformists, medical malpractice insurance lobbyists, and corporate nursing homes all desperately want to prevent ordinary citizens from fair compensation for injuries that could potentially afflict them for the rest of their lives.  These tort reformists and HMO lobbyist supporters want the government to place caps on how much a jury is allowed to compensate injured patients. Imagine that. An elected official making a law that says a jury is not permitted to pay victims of malpractice fair compenation – no matter what. 

Is $100,000 for causing a young mother of 4 children to lose a breast to misdiagnosed cancer a fair cap? How about $250,000 for causing a father of 3 to spend a lifetime in a wheel chair; or $300,000 for a child who will live the rest of his or her life with a debilitating brain injury?  These governement proposed caps on mothers, fathers and children’s compensation  would also eliminate the possibility of punitive damages in the case of willful and intentional conduct. Research has shown that monetary punishments are one of the few effective ways to hold corporate wrongdoers accountable for purposelfully harming consumers in the name of profit. As for the medical field, most doctors are hard working, decent, and caring professionals. These doctors don’t need tort reform.

Medical Malpractice Lawyers in New Jersey and Philadelphia

If you or a loved one have been vicitmized by medical malpractice or negligence, contact Messa & Associates for a free case evaluation. NJ and PA medical malpractice attorneys at Messa & Associates, P.C. are experienced in earning fair and helpful compensation for those injured by medical negligence. You may also call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.

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Medical Malpractice Attorneys: The Tort Reform Battle

The spirited debate over medical malpractice litigation has been a hot button issue in the United States. Some believe that medical malpractice lawsuits are adversarial, unpredictable, inefficient, and costly. The other side of the coin is that these lawsuits are necessary to compensate patients who have been the victims of negligence. Medical malpractice attorneys believe that although there are negatives to these types of lawsuits, they are a necessary part of our jurisprudence and essential for patients in search of justice.

Limiting Damages, Statute of Limitations, and Litigation is Bad for Patients

new jersey philadephia medical malpractice attorneys negligence tort reform battleAny medical professional who has spent a significant amount of time in the field knows that medical malpractice does sometimes happen. Although not all medical negligence is serious and life-altering, some rare instances of malpractice are extremely severe and tragic. Lawyers urge that it is these victims who should be allowed to exhaust the judicial system in search of justice. Opponents will certainly argue that doctors will undoubtedly go out of business or flock to states with a more favorable system of tort damages. The victims in cases of medical malpractice are the patients, not the doctors. It is important that although this has become a popular issue recently, that we do not forget the tradition of this country. Many medical malpractice attorneys believe that a jury of the victim’s peers should be able to hear the case and determine a reasonable damage award after being presented with all of the evidence. Aren’t jurors, who hear each case individually, in a better place to determine a fair outcome, as opposed to representatives sitting in a state capital, who throw a limit on damages no matter how serious or traumatic? It seems that a jury is in a better position to determine the severity of a particular case. We should trust juries to come to a fair and equitable outcome, our forefathers certainly did.

Medical Malpractice Attorneys in New Jersey and Philadelphia

If you or a family member has recently been the victim of medical negligence, it is possible that you would like to speak with our professionals. Please contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation, or call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.

Medical Malpractice Lawyers Inform of the Dangers of Damage Caps

There has been a push in some legal and political circles to cap damages for medical malpractice cases. Usually when this is discussed, some anecdotal story is brought up about some minor injury and a multi-million dollar award. However, these misleading anecdotes do not tell the whole story. The judgments that medical malpractice lawyers get work to serve the community in several ways that, when caps are utilized, are greatly diminished in value. Attorneys help victims regain some semblance of their life, and usually a modest sum to compensate the victims. Damage caps are destructive to our legal system.

What Damage Caps Do

new jersey philadelphia medical malpractice attorneys dangers damage capsThose anecdotes you hear are often about some “frivolous” injury and a multi-million dollar award. Usually, these anecdotes are urban legends and are far from the truth. Juries are assigned with the task of fixing damages based on a number of factors, including the projected cost of continued medical care. When caps are utilized, medical malpractice lawyers can still win a judgment, but it is more likely that the judgment is not going to be enough to cover the victim’s medical costs. When the victim cannot pay their medical bills, the government will have to step in and help, help that is subsidized by taxpayers. Why should victims of medical malpractice and citizens have to bear the burden of “fixing the system” in favor of insurance companies and doctors?

Furthermore, what damage caps do is artificially allow bad doctors to stay in business and hurt other people. If damage caps are not utilized, attorneys will win judgments that compensate their clients, which are typically paid out by the doctor’s insurance company. When you lose a medical malpractice case, your medical malpractice insurance premium will increase and some of the worst doctors will be forced out of practice. However, with the caps in place, the consequences for practicing bad medicine are greatly lowered, and many of these dangerous doctors are still practicing.

Medical Malpractice Lawyers in New Jersey and Philadelphia

If you or a family member have recently undergone a surgery, and have been the victim of medical malpractice or negligence, you should contact the Mininno Law Office. You and your family deserve compensation for your injuries. Please call our experienced professionals at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia for a free case evaluation and consultation.

Medical Malpractice Attorneys and Judge Fight Caps on Damages

Circuit Judge, Ronald Wilson, joined the West Virginia Supreme Court on a temporary basis to hear a challenge to the state’s law which capped non economic medical malpractice damages. Medical malpractice attorneys say that Wilson, although his position was not a majority among the court, acted as a strong advocate for victims of medical negligence who may seek damages. Some argue that non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, are frivolous and should not exceed a certain amount for victims and their families. Wilson combated this argument by saying, “spend a day in their shoes if you think mental pain and loss of enjoyment are frivolous damages.”

Why Should Healthcare Providers Who Negligently Hurt Someone be Protected

new jersey philadelphia medical malpractice attorneys ronald wilson West Virginia Supreme CourtWilson strongly argued that these medical malpractice caps are blatantly favoring a special class of society over the general public. This special class includes medical professionals, corporations, insurance companies, and special interests groups. Malpractice victims may suffer many non-economic damages that will no longer be fully compensated for in states such as West Virginia. Someone who is permanently disfigured, maimed, or handicapped will certainty be owed compensation that exceeds mere medical expenses and future costs. An avid golfer or swimmer who can no longer enjoy these activities, a young child who will never walk or talk, or a woman who can never bear a child are only some of the instances where non-economic damages that exceed a cap may be necessary. Medical malpractice attorneys also have fears that were pointed out by Judge Wilson. He stated,

an unknown number of medical negligence victims can no longer use the court system because of the cap and the fact that lawyers are no longer willing to risk huge litigation expenses for a low net return for their clients and themselves.

Medical Malpractice Attorneys in New Jersey and Philadelphia

If you or a family member has recently been the victim of medical negligence, it is possible that you would like to speak with our professionals. Please contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation, or call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.

Medical Malpractice Attorneys: NC Governor Stands Up For Victims

Governor Bev Perdue of North Carolina took a major step in sticking up for seriously injured victims of medical negligence within the state. Governor Perdue vetoed North Carolina Senate Bill 33 which would have capped non-economic damages at $500,000 regardless of the severity of the patient’s injuries. Medical malpractice attorneys believe that this is a great win for patients of medical negligence because they will be awarded a damages amount that they truly deserve, not a figure that was arbitrarily decided by a group of politicians.

Malpractice Reform Won’t Work if it Does Not Protect the Catastrophically Injured

medical malpractice attorneys in nj and paThe damages for pain and suffering, and other non-economic measures, would have had a ceiling of half a million dollars. Some people may argue that this is quite a significant figure, and ask who wouldn’t be happy with $500,000? Medical malpractice attorneys argue that the problem with these sorts of limitations is that they include the pain and suffering that accompanies death, paralysis, brain damage and severe disfigurement. Individuals who suffer from some of these ailments for their entire lives would strenuously argue that a jury who hears a case should decide the correct amount to be awarded, not a group of politicians in the state capital. Perdue agrees, the governor recently stated “I commend the legislature for addressing this important issue, but, in its current form, the bill is unbalanced. I urge legislators to modify the bill to protect those who are catastrophically injured when the general assembly returns.Medical malpractice attorneys believe this is a strong stance for the governor to take to ensure that those who are truly injured by medical malpractice will not be short changed.

Medical Malpractice Attorneys in New Jersey and Philadelphia

If you or a family member has recently been the victim of medical negligence, it is possible that you would like to speak with medical malpractice attorneys. Please contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation, or call for a free consultation at 856-833-0600 in New Jersey, or 215-567-2380 in Philadelphia.

Medical Malpractice Reform Strikes in North Carolina

The North Carolina Senate has recently passed a bill that is expected to reform medical malpractice laws. Specifically, the bill will limit the amount of money plaintiffs can be awarded following a civil trial within the state. The legislature’s hope is that with the liability of medical malpractice limited, higher quality doctors and medical personnel will stay within the state. The goals of the Senate also include a hope to lower health care costs because as liability decreases, the cost of medical malpractice insurance will also become lower. Although it is a great advantage for the state to have lower health care costs and more respected medical personnel, this action may also limit the availability of just remedies to those who are hurt by medical malpractice and negligence.

Patient’s Remedies Become Limited

medical malpractice lawyers in nj & paPatients in North Carolina will still be able to recover medical costs and lost income that result from medical malpractice or negligence. However, there will now be a $500,000 cap on the amount juries are able to award for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering. A safeguard is included for plaintiffs which says that this cap is not relevant when a doctor or health care providers conduct is seen as grossly negligent, fraudulent, intentional, malicious, or reckless disregard for others that results in death, permanent injury, disfigurement, or loss of a part of the body. This exception does not cover incidents when patients are seriously injured by medical malpractice that does not fall into one of these narrow exception categories. North Carolina Senate President Phil Berger stated:

“Our citizens suffer in a lottery-like system that lets trial lawyers win big while doctors flee to states where they can practice without fear of unfair lawsuits. I commend our members for reaching a reasonable compromise.”

What Berger fails to recognize is that the legal system and judges are in place to decide when a lawsuit is unfair. If a judge allows a case to go to trial, why shouldn’t injured patients be allowed to collect damages that a jury of their peers found fitting? Medical malpractice and negligence is the problem, plaintiffs who collect money following extreme pain and suffering is justice. Limiting the amount of money that severely injured people can collect is extremely unfair, especially when much of that suffering comes at the hands of doctors that are paid to be attentive, not negligent.

Medical Malpractice Attorneys in New Jersey and Philadelphia

If you or a loved one has recently undergone a medical procedure but are still in pain which you believe can be attributed to medical malpractice, it is possible that you have some questions. Please contact the Mininno Law Office at 856-833-0600 in New Jersey, or 215-567-2380 in Philadelphia.

Medical Malpractice Attorneys and Doctors Meet at Summit in PA

This past Monday, April 25th, a health care summit was held at the Hyatt on Delaware Ave in Philadelphia, PA that focused on medical malpractice and possible tort reform in Pennsylvania. The summit was put together by Dr. Peter Kowey, a cardiologist at Main Line Health, and attendees included local doctors and attorneys.

Medical Malpractice Summit Brings New Ideas for Reform

new jersey philadelphia medical malpractice attorneys doctors meet summitAt the summit, doctors maintained that tort reform is necessary because the threat of medical malpractice lawsuits forces them to practice “defensive medicine,” a system of ordering too many unnecessary tests in order to avoid being sued. Attorneys and patient advocacy groups maintained that the real reform needed is of the healthcare system, patient safety, and patient support. Patient advocates also push for reform of insurance companies and the amount of money they are allowed to charge.

Patients advocates and attorneys fear that reform of the tort system regarding medical malpractice will serve to remove the rights of injured patients to compensation. Tort reform has already taken a huge toll on patient rights in Texas as awards for damages in medical malpractice cases in the state have been reduced to almost nothing, preventing attorneys from taking cases. Without representation, patients remain uncompensated. Kowey claimed that doctors do not want to remove a patient’s right to compensation for medical errors, but to repair what they believe is a flawed system for determining liability.

Medical Malpractice Attorneys in New Jersey and Philadelphia

Our attorneys are dedicated to fighting for the rights of injured patients. Medical errors have the potential to ruin lives, and compensation is often necessary to pay for the extra, required medical costs.
If you or a loved one have recently been victimized by medical negligence, Contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation, or call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.

Medical Malpractice Lawyers Keep Debunking Tort Reform Myths!

new jersey philadelphia medical malpractice lawyers debunking tort reform myths A key issue in the tort reform debate involves “defensive medicine.” Supporters of medical malpractice litigation reform claim that “defensive medicine,” usually in the form unnecessary and preemptive testing, is largely due to a widespread physician fear of lawsuits. They claim that these tests drive up the costs of health care, and that reducing a doctor’s chances of being sued would simultaneously reduce the occurrences of defensive medicine, and thus reduce the costs of health care. However, a recent study performed out of the University of Iowa and funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (the nation’s largest philanthropy devoted to public health) found that in states where tort reform legislation was passed, defensive medicine is still being practiced and doctors are still just as fearful of being sued.

Study Finds that Tort Reform Allegations are Simply Propoganda

Researchers achieved their results by ranking lawsuit risk on a state-by-state basis by the amount of claims actually paid by medical malpractice insurance companies. Research found that doctors who practiced in low-risk states (states that have passed their own tort reform legislation) had essentially the same amount of anxiety about being sued as doctors in high risk states (states that have not passed any type of malpractice reform). Defensive medicine is still being practiced, and therefore tort reform did not lower health care costs. The study stated:

“Overall, the study suggests that current tort reform efforts aimed at reducing malpractice risk would be relatively ineffective in alleviating physicians’ concern about lawsuits and therefore may not alter defensive medicine practices.”

Tort Reformists Ignoring Real Issue

What is alarming is that recent studies have shown that medical malpractice is not decreasing, despite defensive medicine and other efforts. A study of 10 North Carolina hospitals published in the New England Journal of Medicine (read our blog regarding this study) assessed 2,300 random patient files. Of those 2,300 patients, 39%endured some sort of medical error or patient harm. Seventeen errors resulted in permanent injury, and fourteen resulted in death.

It seems that more time and effort should be spent on correcting the horrid rate of medical errors, rather than saving HMO’s and negligent medical providers money. While tort reformists and insurance lobbyists push to limit liability and cap damages for injured patients, doctors and hospitals continue to harm patients at an unacceptable rate. It looks like priorities in this matter have been seriously skewed.

Medical Malpractice Attorneys in New Jersey and Philadelphia

If you or a loved one have suffered at the hands of a negligent medical provider, please contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation. You may also call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.
Let the team at the Mininno Law Office earn you the compensation you need and deserve.

House Introduces Malpractice Reform Bill

On Monday, Republicans introduced medical malpractice reform legislation into the House that, if passed, would greatly limit the rights of patients who have suffered injuries at the hands of negligent medical providers. The bill, sponsored by Republican Phil Gingrey (R-GA), an OB/GYN, Republican David Scott (D-GA), and Judiciary Committee Chairman, Republican Lamar Smith (R-TX), aims to place extensive limits on how and when victims of medical negligence can file claims. It also aims to apply one-size-fits-all caps on recoveries.


new jersey medical malpractice lawyers republican phil gingrey
Republican Phil Gingrey (R-GA)
The bill was introduced as the Help-Efficient, Lowcost, Accessible, Timely Health Care Act, or HEALTH Act. Supporters of the proposed legislation claim that reform of the medical liability system is necessary to lower healthcare costs. But the Congressional Budget Office has estimated that such reform could only save, at most, .5% of all healthcare costs. Furthermore, the bill does nothing to support an American people that loses up to 100,000 lives a year to medical negligence. With caps on liability, the bill serves as a government hand-out to physicians, insurance companies, nursing homes, and even pharmaceutical companies, that act with negligence and greed, and harm patients and consumers.

Limiting liability and removing many patients’ rights to a jury trial will only further the country’s current medical negligence problem that continues to worsen. What motivation is there to provide better care when accountability lessens? If healthcare reform is the question, sacrificing patients’ rights is not the answer.

Medical Malpractice Lawyers in New Jersey and Philadelphia

Medical malpractice lawyers everywhere are fighting the passage of medical liability reform legislation. Patients are injured everyday due to the practice of negligent and careless medicine, and many need compensation to carry out the rest of their lives.

If you or a loved one have suffered at the hands of a negligent medical provider, contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation. You may also call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.

Let our team fight for your rights to full and fair compensation.

President Obama Mentions Tort Reform in his State of the Union Address

Last night, in his State of the Union Address, President Obama tenderly glossed over a subject that has been a source for much debate over the last few years; medical malpractice reform. The President stated that he was:

“willing to look at other ideas to bring down [health care] costs, including one that Republicans suggested last year: medical malpractice reform to rein in frivolous lawsuits.”

Tort Reform Hurts Consumers

new jersey philadelphia medical malpractice lawyers president obama tort reformAs medical malpractice lawyers, we find that those who accuse medical malpractice claims of being frivolous do not understand the extent of the damage done to people’s lives when negligent doctors make irreversible mistakes. Tort reform would only serve to harm those who are already victims of their health system, and reduce liability for those companies that, by merit of their missions, should be working for their consumers, not against them.

Medical providers and manufacturers have great responsibilities to those that lend them their trust. Patients put their lives in the hands of doctors and surgeons. Consumers put their lives in the hands of manufacturers. Limiting the liability that these figures would be responsible for would only assist in diminishing the importance of those responsibilities. Many states in the US have already begun putting in place their own tort reform legislation; reform that includes caps on damages. For a family of five in Texas with a working mother that died due to a cancer misdiagnosis, a medical malpractice lawsuit could reap no more than $250,000. This amount of money would hardly cover medical bills, let alone take care of the remaining family members in the absence of their mother’s income.

Allegations that the tort system costs the health care industry billions of dollars a year are constantly debunked. Health Affairs, the leading journal of health policies and research, estimated that less than 2.5% of all healthcare costs can be attributed to medical malpractice litigation. And while tort reformists argue about “frivolous lawsuits,” they never seem to mention the “frivolous defenses.” Medical providers who have made irrevocable mistakes, instead of taking responsibility and compensating accordingly, mount “frivolous defenses,” paying high priced lawyers and medical “experts” to argue that the medicine they practiced was on par with the standard of care.

While most doctors strive to heal, there are those that strive only to gain money and power. These doctors will cut corners and practice negligent medicine, and it’s these doctors that must be held liable. How can we protect patients and consumers when we are restricting punishment and restitution for their harms?

Medical Malpractice Lawyers in New Jersey and Philadelphia

So often, the media taints it’s picture of medical malpractice attorneys and their fight against medical negligence. It is a widespread belief that these “ambulance chasers” want nothing more than money, and they’ll get it any way they can. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Medical malpractice attorneys work on a contingency basis, meaning they work for free unless they win. And they work on the side of justice, hoping to earn compensation for those who have been seriously injured and affected by negligence.

If you or a loved one have suffered due to medical malpractice, contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation, or call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.

Let the Mininno Law Office team work to earn you the compensation you need and deserve.