What You Need to Know About Medical Malpractice Payouts By State

Certain states have a cap on the amount of money individuals may recover in a medical malpractice lawsuit, also known as a medical malpractice payout. Twenty-nine states currently have laws placing a cap on malpractice damages victims may receive. However, the average medical malpractice payout in medical malpractice lawsuits depends on the type of claim. Individuals should contact a lawyer to further discuss the details of their medical malpractice case to determine the payout.

Related: How to File a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit Without an Attorney

Medical Malpractice Caps By State

State Existence of a Cap on Medical Malpractice Damages? Requirements
Alabama No Cap found unconstitutional
Alaska Yes $400,000 noneconomic damages including wrongful death or a disability considered more than 70% disabling; otherwise, cap is $250,000; for non-malpractice damages may not exceed
Arizona No Constitutional provision prohibiting caps
Arkansas No Constitutional provision prohibiting caps
California Yes $250,000
Colorado Yes $300,000 noneconomic damages

$1,000,000 total damages

Connecticut None N/A
Delaware None N/A
District of Columbia (D.C.) None N/A
Florida No Cap found unconstitutional 
Georgia No Cap found unconstitutional 
Hawaii Yes $375,000 with limited exceptions for cases involving multiple defendants
Idaho Yes $250,000 adjusted annually for inflation
Illinois No Cap found unconstitutional
Indiana Yes $1,250,000 total damages after 1999

Providers liable for $250,000

Iowa Yes $250,000 except in cases of substantial or permanent loss or impairment of bodily functions, substantial disfigurement, or wrongful death 
Kansas Yes $350,000 cap for causes of action occurring on or after July 1, 2022
Kentucky No Constitutional provision prohibiting caps
Louisiana Yes $500,000 total damages, plus the cost of future medical expenses

Providers liable for $100,000

Maine Yes $500,000 cap on wrongful death only
Maryland Yes $650,000 increasing by $15,000 each year beginning in 2009, 125% for wrongful death claims
Massachusetts Yes $500,000 unless there is a “substantial or permanent loss or impairment of a bodily function or substantial disfigurement or other special circumstances warranting finding the imposition of such limitation would deprive plaintiff of just compensation for injuries”
Michigan Yes $454,410 as of 2018, $811,410 for disabling injuries as of 2018 but adjusts annually for inflation 
Minnesota No N/A
Mississippi Yes $500,000
Missouri Yes $420,749 increased to $736,310 for cases of catastrophe, personal injury, or wrongful death 
Montana Yes $250,000
Nebraska Yes  $1,250,000 for malpractice occurring between 1993 and 2003, $1,750,000 for malpractice occurring between 2004 and 2014, $2,250,000 for malpractice occurring after 2014
Nevada Yes $350,000 from each defendant 
New Hampshire No Cap found unconstitutional 
New Jersey No Only punitive damages capped
New Mexico Yes $600,00 cap on all damages except for past/future medical bills 

$200,000 maximum provider liability 

New York No N/A
North Carolina Yes $500,000 set in 2011, adjusted every year for inflation 
North Dakota Yes $500,000
Ohio Yes $250,000 or three times the plaintiff’s economic damages with an overall maximum of $350,000 per plaintiff or $500,000 for each case if there is more than one plaintiff constitutional provision prohibiting caps on wrongful death claims
Oklahoma Yes $350,000
Oregon No  Cap found unconstitutional 
Pennsylvania No Constitutional provision preventing caps
Rhode Island No N/A
South Carolina  Yes $1,050,000 – $350,000 against each provider, adjusted annually for inflation 
South Dakota Yes $500,000
Tennessee Yes $750,000 for non-catastrophic cases, $1,000,000 for catastrophic injuries including those to the spinal cord resulting in paraplegia, quadriplegia, amputation of hands/feet, and extensive burns
Texas Yes $250,000 against each health care facility, not exceeding $500,000 $250,000 against multiple individual health care providers
Utah Yes $450,000 Constitutional provision prohibiting caps on wrongful death claims
Vermont No N/A
Virginia Yes $2,500,000 and rise each year until topping out at $3,000,000
Washington No Cap found unconstitutional 
West Virginia Yes $250,000 $500,000 in catastrophic cases, including wrongful death, permanent and serious disfigurement, or an injury permanently preventing the plaintiff from being able to care for themselves and perform life-sustaining activities – but exceptions exist
Wisconsin No Cap found unconstitutional 
Wyoming No Constitutional provision prohibiting caps

Related: Medical Malpractice Statute of Limitations By State

All information above is accurate as of August 22nd, 2022. State statutes regarding medical malpractice caps are subject to change and exemptions depending on the case. Individuals should visit the state website where they live for further information on individual medical malpractice laws. Consult with a knowledgeable attorney to get any questions answered or for representation in a lawsuit regarding medical malpractice payouts.

Sources:

https://www.leveragerx.com/blog/medical-malpractice-payouts-by-state/

https://www.millerandzois.com/malpractice-damage-caps.html

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