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Group Pushes Washington State to Consider Broad Tort Reforms

The escalating cost of insurance for professionals in a wide variety of fields means tort reform must extend beyond its traditional area of focus, medical...
January 6, 2004

The escalating cost of insurance for professionals in a wide variety of fields means tort reform must extend beyond its traditional area of focus, medical and product liability. That's the opinion of the Liability Reform Coalition, a Washington state group. Board member Jud Marquardt says although the rapid increases in the costs of malpractice insurance has received the most attention, large and small businesses are facing triple-digit increases in the premiums for liability insurance or the unavailability of coverage.

Governor Gary Locke (D) recently proposed a measure that would help some doctors who serve Medicaid patients with the cost of malpractice insurance, but Marquardt contends that the plan is too limited.  The coalition supports legislative reforms that include limits on jury awards for non-economic damages, a sliding scale for attorney contingency fees, increased use of arbitration, and measures preventing frivolous lawsuits. 

Liability insurance: It isn't just for doctors anymore (Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

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