Skip to content

Federal Judge Upholds Texas’s Noneconomic Damages Cap

by Leah Greene, JD, LLM on March 28th, 2012

Yesterday, in a brief one-page ruling, Judge Rodney Gilstrap of the Eastern District of Texas upheld the noneconomic damages cap implemented by the Texas Legislature in 2003 as part of its tort reform law. The cap was affirmed by Texas voters later that year.

The suit was brought by 10 plaintiffs in 2008. The plaintiffs challenged the constitutionality of the noneconomic damages cap, which limits such damages as pain and suffering and mental anguish to $250,000 to $750,000, depending on the type of defendants. They claimed the cap violated the U.S. Constitution by improperly taking private property and barring access to the courts.

Health care providers see the ruling as a victory, citing decreases in malpractice insurance rates post-tort reform and an increased number of physicians who have moved to the state, including to underserved counties.

There is no word on whether the plaintiffs will appeal the ruling.

More information is available here and here.

Share and Enjoy:
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google Buzz
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email