In 2003, Texas passed a sweeping package of tort reform laws aimed at curbing frivolous lawsuits. The laws set a cap of $250,000 for noneconomic damages in medical malpractice cases and set strict time limits for plaintiffs to prove negligence and find an expert witness.
The new laws may have achieved their goal of curbing frivolous lawsuits and attracting physicians to the state - but at what cost? Texas' broad "reform" of tort laws has made it more difficult for legitimate victims of medical malpractice or negligence to seek deserved compensation for their injuries.
Now a Texas woman may be able to challenge the constitutionality of those laws in court. She lost both of her legs when emergency room doctors failed to diagnose a serious blood clot - even after she told them about her history of blood clots.
Texas' tort reform laws made it difficult for her to find an attorney and an expert witness for her case, and even led a judge to order her to cover some defendants' legal costs. Compounded with medical bills and a lifelong injury, this could be extremely damaging to her physical, emotional and financial well-being.
Victims of medical malpractice may feel the effects for the rest of their lives. In addition to physical injury that can be lasting and debilitating, a medical error may result in lost wages, lost future earning capacity or a loss of the ability to enjoy everyday life.
If you or someone you love have been injured as a result of a health care provider's negligence, Texas' strict tort laws make it especially important to seek help. Contact an experienced personal injury attorney who handles medical malpractice matters. He or she can help you build a case and pursue any appropriate claims for damages.
Source: The Texas Tribune, "Despite Counsel, Amputee Hindered by Tort Laws," Becca Aaronson, Jan. 25, 2013