Brian Gilbert - Enlightenment

Frivolous Lawsuits
Posted By: Brian Gilbert on March 15, 2009

My biggest problem with Americans is Frivolous Lawsuits and I'll explain.

Many years ago there was a commercial about cocaine addiction. This guy says he does more coke so he can work longer so he can make more money so he can do more coke so he can work longer so he can make more money so he can do more coke. The ad ends by saying if you or someone you know is addicted to cocaine call 1-800-662-HELP.

I'm going to tie frivolous lawsuits and our medical expenses together in this article.

We've all heard about the person with diabetes who had to have a leg amputated and the doctor ended up cutting off the wrong leg. The patient then sued and got 50 gazillion dollars. Good for the patient you say? WRONG! Bad for everyone. RIGHT! Here's why.

Who do you think pays the 50 gazillion dollars? The insurance company. So now, the insurance company has to raise their rates on not only the doctor that cut off the wrong leg, but all doctors. So now, doctors still want to maintain their "lavish" lifestyle so they have to raise their rates and patients end up paying more for each visit to the doctor. Then, another lawsuit comes along, another 50 gazillion dollars is awarded, insurance rates go up, doctors fees go up. It's a never ending cycle just like cocaine addiction.

I don't know how to stop it, but I do know a cap needs to be put in place. And attorneys will disagree with this because the less money their client wins, the less they get in their paychecks.

If a 25 year old person goes to the doctor to have a leg amputated and the doctor cuts off the wrong leg. How much should the patient sue for? I agree 100% that a lawsuit should happen. Chances are the 25 year old will never in their life be worth 50 gazillion dollars with both legs so why should they get 50 gazillion dollars with no legs. Their medical expenses related to the surgery past, present, and future should be covered, no questions asked. However, when it comes to the pain and suffering, and any other monies awarded, this is how it should work. How much money was the patient earning at their most recent job? How much was their last pay raise? If they're making $40,000 per year and have gotten a 3% pay raise over the last 2 years. You take those numbers, figure they would retire at 67 and that's how much they get with a little fluff on top. PERIOD! They DON'T get 50 gazillion dollars!

If a person with a long history of unemployment goes to the emergency room for chest pains and the hospital screws up and the patient dies, why do the living family members get 50 gazillion dollars? THAT MAKES NO SENSE! I'm not saying the persons life wasn't worth something, but the person who died obviously didn't value their life at 50 gazillion dollars so why should we?

I don't know what the perfect math equation would be and I doubt there would be only one equation. But you get the idea.

These lawsuits eventually drive hospitals out of business and we complain because we don't feel like we're getting the medical care we need. There are tons and tons of release forms that now have to be signed. Some hospitals no longer allow the birth of child to be filmed in fear of the parents turning that video around on them and suing. Quite frankly, I'd be afraid to be a doctor. For God's sake, we're even scared to pull over on the side of the road to help someone in fear of getting mugged or if we gave them a ride and got into an accident, we would get sued for simply trying to help.

We've got to stop thinking of ourselves ONLY and look at the big picture America.

Capping frivolous lawsuits is only a small part in getting things back on track.

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