Now that Donald Trump is the President-Elect of the United States, the innocent victims of medical negligence whose lives have been disrupted and whose hopes and aspirations for the future have been destroyed, and the medical malpractice attorneys who represent them, are wearily wondering the effect that Mr. Trump’s election to the highest office in this country will have on the rights of medical malpractice victims in the United States to seek and obtain fair and just compensation for their losses and the harms they suffered.
The 2012 Republican Party Platform, under the heading “Reducing Costs through Tort Reform,” stated: “Frivolous medical malpractice lawsuits have ballooned the cost of healthcare for the average American. Physicians are increasingly practicing defensive medicine because of the looming threat of malpractice liability. Moreover, some medical practitioners are avoiding patients with complex and high-risk medical problems because of the high costs of medical malpractice lawsuits. Rural America is hurt especially hard as obstetricians, surgeons, and other healthcare providers are moving to urban settings or retiring, causing a significant healthcare workforce shortage and subsequently decreasing access to care for all patients. We are committed to aggressively pursuing tort reform legislation to help avoid the practice of defensive medicine, to keep healthcare costs low, and improve healthcare quality.”
The Republican Platform 2016, under the heading “Better Care and Lower Costs: Tort Reform,” stated: “Medical malpractice lawsuits have ballooned the cost of healthcare for everyone by forcing physicians to practice defensive medicine through tests and treatments which otherwise might be optional. Rural America is especially affected as obstetricians, surgeons, and other providers move to urban settings or retire in the face of escalating insurance premiums. Many Republican Governors have advanced the legal reforms necessary to reverse that trend. We support state and federal legislation to cap non-economic damages in medical malpractice lawsuits, thereby relieving conscientious providers of burdens that are not rightly theirs and addressing a serious cause of higher medical bills.”
It has been reported that Donald Trump wants to enact medical malpractice tort reform to end what he calls defensive medicine, which occurs when physicians and other health care providers order allegedly needless and expensive medical tests for patients due to their fear of being sued for medical malpractice. It is also reported that Mr. Trump will seek to enact federal legislation to limit noneconomic damages awards in medical malpractice cases to $100,000, and to enact “loser pays” laws (where the losers of medical malpractice cases must pay the legal expenses of the winners).
Is What’s Good For The Goose, Good For The Gander?
Donald Trump is no stranger to using the courts, frequently, to seek redress for what he considers to be wrongs that he suffered at the hands of others. According to The Center For Public Integrity, Mr. Trump has “a lengthy history of filing lawsuits — often to protect his image or gain a financial edge.” Mr. Trump has been either a plaintiff or a defendant in about 100 federal lawsuits, and his companies have been involved in more than 200 civil lawsuits in federal courts.
A sampling of the lawsuits filed by Mr. Trump:
- Mr. Trump filed two lawsuits against Palm Beach County, Florida, seeking to block a new runway at a local airport that could have increased noise levels at his Mar-a-Lago property;
- Mr. Trump sued his former law firm for listing him as an ex-client on the law firm’s website and allegedly treating him as a “cash cow”;
- Mr. Trump sued the New York Times and one of its journalists, claiming $5 billion in damages, for alleging in a book that Mr. Trump was worth much less than Mr. Trump claimed.
What were the results of the above-referenced lawsuits filed by Mr. Trump? LOSSES OR SETTLEMENTS.
Still pending is the class-action lawsuit filed against Mr. Trump that alleges that Trump University’s students did not receive the real estate investment education that Trump University advertised and promised.
Politico’s “2016 Presidential White Papers Series” stated, “While there are many more examples, … Trump has repeatedly engaged in frivolous, retaliatory litigation, and … he regularly appears to abuse the legal system as a tool for publicity or political gain, as opposed to an instrument of legal remedy and relief.”
Donald Trump’s Presidential Position On Medical Malpractice Tort Reform
Not much was said by Donald Trump about medical malpractice tort reform while he campaigned to become President of the United States. It is difficult to predict what Donald Trump will attempt to do with regard to medical malpractice tort reforms on the federal level once he is sworn in as the 45th President of the United States. With regard to certain rights, Mr. Trump has stated that the federal government should not get involved and that the states should be left to address such rights: “As President, Donald Trump will fulfill that sworn duty, vetoing legislation that exceeds Congressional authority, taking actions as Chief Executive and Commander-in-Chief that are consistent with his constitutional role … This includes the Tenth Amendment guarantee that many areas of governance are left to the people and the States, and are not the role of the federal government to fulfill.” Source
It is anyone’s guess at this time if Donald Trump, as President of the United States, will introduce and/or support federal legislation affecting the rights of innocent victims of medical malpractice.
If you or a loved one suffered serious injury or other harm as a result of medical negligence in the United States, you should promptly find a local medical malpractice lawyer in your state who may investigate your medical malpractice claim for you and represent you or your loved one in a medical malpractice case, if appropriate.
Visit our website or call us toll-free in the United States at 800-295-3959 to find medical malpractice attorneys in your U.S. state who may assist you.
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