Changes in the law have a massive impact on active and future court cases. If you’re currently working with a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer or are considering hiring one to represent you in a malpractice suit, it’s important that you understand the basics of Proposition 46 that will be on the November ballot. Proposition 46 will dramatically change the way in which malpractice suits are handled, make major changes to existing law, and set a precedent for higher settlements.
The core function of Proposition 46 is raising California’s cap on non-economic damages in medical negligence lawsuits. The current cap stands at $250,000; if Prop 46 is passed the new cap will be over $1,000,000. This means plaintiffs bringing medical malpractice suits against their doctors may have an opportunity for an increased settlement. Your personal injury lawyer can walk you through how this new measure, if passed, might apply to your case. The law is controversial and you’ll find supporters on both sides, so work with your attorney to find the information specific to your situation.
The secondary function of Prop 46 is redefining drug testing protocols for doctors. Under Prop 46, doctors would be required to submit themselves for drug and alcohol testing, with positive results being referred to the California Medical Board. The board would then be required to suspend the doctor pending investigation of the positive test results. Doctors who test positive for impairment while on duty could be punished by the board, and health care practitioners would be required to report doctors for drug or alcohol use on the job.
If passed, Prop 46 would be the first measure in the United States that makes random drug testing of physicians mandatory.