Is there a cap on medical malpractice damages in Montana?

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Question:

Is there a cap on medical malpractice damages in Montana?

Answer:

Yes. Like many states, Montana has passed a law that limits (or “caps”) non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases, effectively limiting the amount of money that a successful plaintiff can receive, even after a jury has found the defendant liable for medical malpractice.

Montana's cap for non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases is set at $250,000, according to Montana Code Annotated section 25-9-411.

So, what are non-economic damages? They are meant to compensate the plaintiff for the negative effects of medical malpractice that aren't easily calculable; losses that are more subjective from plaintiff to plaintiff. They include compensation for pain and suffering, stress and anxiety, loss of enjoyment of life, scarring and disfigurement, and similar harm caused by the defendant's malpractice.

It's important to point out that Montana's cap on medical malpractice damages does not apply to economic damages, which are losses that include the plaintiff's past medical bills, cost of future medical care, reimbursement of lost earnings, compensation for harm to the plaintiff's ability to work because of the malpractice, and any other provable losses that can be tied to the malpractice and/or to the medical treatment that was made necessary by it.

by: , J.D.

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