New Nevada Law Impacts Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
Nevada’s new law on health care professional negligence impacts medical malpractice lawsuits including increasing the time plaintiffs have to file.
Nevada’s new law on health care professional negligence, called AB404, gives plaintiffs more time to file medical malpractice lawsuits, increases the amount of money juries can award them, and changes the fees plaintiffs' attorneys can charge.
More Time to File Lawsuits
Plaintiffs have had 3 years from the date of the alleged injury or 1 year from the date the patient discovered or should have discovered the alleged injury, whichever came first, to file a lawsuit for health care or medical negligence.
For alleged injuries that occur after October 1, 2023, plaintiffs will still have 3 years from the injury date to file a medical malpractice lawsuit. The new law doubles the amount of time to file a lawsuit from the date the patient discovered or should have discovered the injury to file to 2 years.
Increasing Caps on Damages
Juries in medical malpractice lawsuits have been able to award plaintiffs up to $350,000 for noneconomic damages, which are losses without a specific agreed-upon dollar amount such as pain and suffering.
Beginning January 1, 2024, that $350,000 cap will increase by $80,000 each year until the end of 2028. That means that by January 1, 2028, juries may be awarding up to $750,000 in noneconomic damages. In 2029, the cap on noneconomic damages will continue to increase, by 2.1% each year.
There is no limit on economic damages resulting from health care or medical professional negligence. Economic damages include lost income, reduced earning capacity, and the costs of past and future medical treatment.
Changing Attorneys’ Fees from a Sliding Scale to a Flat Rate
Prior to the new law, medical malpractice plaintiffs' attorneys could collect from the plaintiff 40% of the first $50,000 recovered; 33.3% of the next $50,000 recovered; 25% of the next $500,000; and 15% of recoveries over $600,000.
The new law replaces the tiers with a flat rate of 35% of the amount recovered on behalf of the plaintiff.
If you have questions about the new law or want to schedule a medical professional liability risk consultation, please contact The Risk Team directly at 800-705-0538 or email@example.com. Our experienced Risk Consultants are standing by to answer your questions.