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Personal Injury Appellate Opinions Last Week

I read a few opinions last week that did not rise to to the level of a full post on this blog but are still worth noting:

  • Illinois State Bar Association Mutual Insurance Co. v. Greenfield(Illinois):: Lawyer screws up a will and does the right thing, writing a letter to the beneficiaries informing them of the mistake. Legal malpractice insurer says that by failing to inform it of the letter before sending it, Greenfield violated a condition of his malpractice policy and refused to provide him a defense to the legal malpractice claim that ensued. “What a jerk move,” an Illinois appeals court said, finding the malpractice carrier could not bail on their client. (Please note: I might be paraphrasing.) Anyway, if you have insurance through ISBAMI, keep in mind they will pull this kinda garbage on their clients who try to do the right thing.
  • Bougere v. Northrop Grumman (Louisiana): wrongful death claim’s statute of limitations begins to run not from asbestos exposure but from decedent’s death. Maryland would rule similarly.
  • New York v. Appellate Judges: I was amazed that New York voters dumped three appellate judges. In Maryland, we just rubber stamp these things.
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  • http://www.ehlinelaw.com Michael Ehline

    Ron. It is very hard to get any lawyer in California to touch a med mal case just due to the 250k cap on general damages. Another example of how govt regulations hurt businesses and justice. Carroll v. Bristol Park Medical Group is just one aspect of the larger problem.

  • Ron

    Mike, here is what I don’t understand? Why is California – the most progressive state in the country, arguably – trying so hard to be the toughest on malpractice victims and, to a lesser extend, all personal injury victims? What is the political dynamic that is causing this?

  • http://www.ehlinelaw.com/ Michael Ehline

    Ron: In any event, this is an old law. It has no provision to deal with the rising costs like inflation. I believe this was passed in the 70′s to try and keep doctors for going out of business. But it is clearly bad. Probably passed by Republicans, I am sad to say, with the help of dems. Oh, and tort reform s not a conservative value either. Both parties have it wrong. BTW. I personally don’t think there is anything “progressive” about liberalism/redistributionism. Just a semantic sales term. All I can say once again is “less government equals more freedom.”

  • http://www.victimslawyer.com Steven Sweat

    Couldn’t agree with Michael Ehline more on this point. The MICRA statute needs to be repealed (not likely) or at least revised to reasonable reflect the the true cost of medical errors on injured patients.