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Is there a cap on medical malpractice damages?

If you are injured through the negligence of your medical provider, you have the right to seek damages. You have the right to expect anyone treating you as a healthcare professional will do a competent job at it. If it is the doctor's fault something went wrong, you deserve compensation. While it is beneficial to patients to be able to sue for damages under medical malpractice in Indiana, the state recognizes that awards that are too large are detrimental to the healthcare industry.

The Indiana State Medical Association explains the state places a cap on the amount of damages paid for a medical malpractice lawsuit. The total damages a court awards cannot exceed $1.25 million. However, to be clear, this is not all paid by the defendant in a case.

The doctor has a responsibility to pay the first $250,000 in damages per patient. In addition, a medical professional only has to pay out $750,000 annually in total for such cases. The Patient's Compensation Fund pays the remaining amount of any damages awarded by a court.

The reason behind such limits on damages is to help keep insurance costs low. Doctors carry malpractice insurance for the specific reason of paying when taking to court. If insurance costs get too high, many doctors stop practicing. This lowers the number of doctors and can limit access to healthcare.

It is important to understand the limitations on damages. This will help you better understand what may happen if you do go to court for a malpractice issue. This information is for education only. It is not legal advice.

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