THIS WAS A DELIBERATE BREAKDOWN OF OUR ENTIRE BRANCH OF JUDICIAL/COURT PROTECTIONS GEARED TOWARDS CITIZEN RIGHTS AND WE MUST REBUILD THIS LOCALLY TO ATTAIN WHAT ALL CITIZENS WANT----OVERSIGHT AND ACCOUNTABILITY----TRANSPARENCY----PUBLIC VOICE IN PUBLIC POLICY----JUSTICE FROM CORPORATE FRAUD AND GOVERNMENT CORRUPTION.
I showed how this current move towards a privatized corporate health care is being used to rid the American people of even this trial lawyer access to legal recourse to medical damage. Global corporate pols are doing the same in the Race To The Top neo-liberal education reform----using our equal protection laws to force corporate charter chains into communities having been denied Federal and state education funding. It is critical we do not allow this right-wing agenda of eliminating all access to citizen public justice in the march to end class action lawsuits and trial lawyer status.
WE NEED TO REFORM THIS CORRUPTED TRIAL LAWYER SYSTEM----NOT END IT.
What Is Tort Reform?
Since the Republicans won control of the House of Representatives in 2010, there has been a lot of discussion about enacting tort reform at a federal level. There is a lot of heated rhetoric on both sides of the issue, but heated rhetoric doesn't help regular citizens understand just what exactly tort reform is and what it will do.
Tort reform isn't one single idea or law. Instead, it's a group of ideas and laws designed to change the way our civil justice system works. This blog aims to provide neutral explanations of what individual tort reform measures are and what effect they will have on the court system and on citizens.
While each tort reform law is different, they all share one or more of the following goals:
- To make it more difficult for injured people to file a lawsuit.
- To make it more difficult for injured people to obtain a jury trial.
- To place limits on the amount of money injured people receive in a lawsuit.
Any discussion of tort reform is likely to contain lots of jargon and legalese. Before one can take a side in the debate over tort reform, one needs to understand the terms and concepts in the debate. My name is Justinian Lane, and I put this blog together while I was still a law student. I have since graduated from Michigan State University College of Law and am now licensed to practice law in Washington state. While I'm confident that everything here is accurate, please don't consider this blog to be legal advice. If you have a legal question, find a lawyer. If you'd like help finding a lawyer you can either (a) contact your state bar association for a free referral, or (b) email justinian at justinian dot us.
This site links to various web sites, some of which may belong to lawyers. Don't take these links as a personal recommendation for those lawyers.
TORT Reform has always been an issue for the American Medical Association, MedChi, AND Republicans. The costs of malpractice insurance has soared as the AMA refuses to provide oversight and accountability to BAD DOCTORS. We have research showing that the bulk of malpractice is done by a small percentage of doctors which the AMA should push out-----suspend their doctor's rights. Some do, but these cases only involve one state and these bad doctors are then allowed to simply move to another state----become licensed again---and often continue bad medicine. We see this same practice in our police departments and the power of a union to protect bad police officers---again, usually a small group----but these practices undermine the integrity of an entire profession.
IT IS AS WELL THE SOURCE OF THE EVER-HIGHER MALPRACTICE INSURANCE.
Who is getting rich in this broken process? THE LAWYERS AND THE INSURANCE CORPORATIONS. See how distorted this system under small government neo-liberalism/Republican policy becomes. So, all of that revenue source that could be going to actual health care access and quality of care is now tracked into the hands of rich law firms and insurance corporations.
Trial lawyers have partnered with Democrats for decades-----they did when not corrupted by naked capitalism augment our public justice system and did provide a safety net for cases too expensive for government to handle. Under Clinton/Obama----that dynamic changed because Wall Street neo-liberals allowed health corporations to harm people and trial lawyers to take the bulk of any settlements citizens received for these health injuries.
The Real Poop
What's the difference between a trial lawyer and a vulture? The trial lawyer gets frequent flyer miles. What do you call 5,000 dead trial lawyers at the bottom of the ocean? A good start. What do trial lawyers and sperm have in common? One in 3 million has a chance of becoming a human being.
It's true, trial lawyers get a pretty bad rap. And with the cost of legal fees alone in this struggling economy, it really is no surprise that trial lawyers are accused of highway robbery…by the actual highway robbers they are defending.
But bad reputation and extraordinary expenses aside, trial lawyers are pretty important peeps within our judicial system. They take the facts of a case, be they good, bad, or ugly, and display them in a way that best supports your position to a judge and/or a jury. "But why can't I just tell the judge my side of the story?" you ask. Because in order to level the playing field in the courtroom, everyone must play by a certain set of complicated rules. Lawyers and judges spend years studying, learning, and applying those complicated rules. And representing yourself in court without knowledge of those rules would be akin to hopping on the next jet plane to London and deciding to bogart a game of Cricket without any protective gear. In other words, it would be stupid. Very, very stupid. Even Matt Damon's character in Good Will Hunting couldn't pull off representing himself in court. And that guy was smaht. He was wicked smaht.
Now suppose you have decided that there is nothing more you want on this green earth than to learn the complicated set of rules and become a trial attorney. Let us be the first to simultaneously congratulate you and hide our wallets. We sincerely hope that you have an excellent sense of humor because you will be the target of many brutal lawyer jokes. And if you happen to be a female, blonde lawyer, you should probably consider a career as a part time comedian as well to help fend off all your enemies.
Aside from being willing to subject yourself to the hatred and ire of the general population, what exactly does it take to be a trial lawyer?
First of all, you have to be wicked smaht, wicked good at school, and wicked good at standardized tests. You also have to be wicked good at communicating and wicked good at listening to people. And perhaps most importantly, you have to be wicked willing to work long hours, put your personal life aside at a moment's notice, and represent clients who you may not think deserve your representation. It's a tough job, but somebody has to charge a lot of money to do it. OH, REALLY???
You also have to pay a lot of money to do it. In order to become a trial lawyer, you must earn a bachelor's degree, score well on the Law School Admissions Test, apply to and get accepted to law school, and then complete your law degree. And after all of that, you get to pat yourself on the back, take the Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam, and…drum roll please…take the Bar Exam in the state in which you choose to practice law. And guess what? Should you desire to practice law in another state, most of the time you get to take yet another…drum roll please…Bar Exam. Based on current averages, you are looking at $280,788 worth of education alone, not including exam fees and the fees associated with any preparation courses you might take to prepare for said exams. Being a trial lawyer is expensive. It's so expensive it should be criminal. Luckily it has a lot of lawyers on its side.
Once you are admitted to the Bar in your state, you can practice law. Hooray! As a trial lawyer, you have lots of options. You can represent clients in both civil and criminal litigation (by the way, litigation is just a fancy pants word for lawsuits). Civil cases = no crime. Civil trial lawyers will represent either the plaintiff (the person who filed the law suit) or the defendant (the person being sued). Civil trial lawyers typically work in the private sector, either for themselves or for an established law firm. Criminal trials, on the other hand = crime has taken place! Call the police! Oh wait, someone already called the police! That's why there's a trial! Criminal trial lawyers either prosecute or defend the accused criminal. The prosecution represents the "people" (the government) and is generally employed by the government. Criminal defense lawyers, on the other hand, represent the accused criminal and can either work for the government, for example as a Public Defender, or in private practice.
Sometimes being a trail lawyer can suck. You're subjecting yourself to long hours and a lot of bad jokes. But then there are the upshots of fighting for justice, prosecuting bad guys, and protecting the innocent. As a trial attorney, you get to help people who are in the middle of some sort of crisis. And though they may be angry at having to pay your bills, they frequently look at you as a beacon of light in what would be an otherwise very dark night. And then there's the super added bonus of getting to annoy your friends by condescendingly saying things like, "That would NEVER happen in a real court of law," as you all sit around and watch Law and Order together.
The corruption of this system started to soar when the US Justice Department under Clinton/Bush/Obama turned away from class action lawsuits for the public injured across the board----in this case by medical malpractice-----and allowed trial lawyers to take these massive class actions and of course came the push by these consolidated group of national law firms to take more and more of these court awards and by process push the court awards well beyond what they should have been. We remember the lawsuit of a person burned by McDonald's coffee and the millions of dollars in award. Everyone knows that is not how this system must work but it was allowed and we now have very rich national trial lawyer firms with very little actual civil justice happening.
The other corruption in this trial lawyer function came when trial lawyers were allowed to hook onto Social Security Disability and other social programs and that allowed yet more of our Federal agencies be soaked in fraud as this system was corrupted. Again, that is not the fault of trial lawyers----it is the fault of having dismantled all oversight and accountability of the legal profession.
So, now we have trial lawyers acting like Wall Street bankers tying themselves to not social Democrats---but Wall Street global corporate neo-liberals. Now, it is not DEMOCRATS protecting these corrupted trial lawyers---it is Wall Street neo-liberals. Social Democrats like Cindy Walsh and Bernie Sanders would want a reform of trial lawyers and class action to include all of what I outlined above.
Trial lawyers to Obama: Don’t deal on tort reform in healthcare neogtiations
By Jeffrey Young - 02/14/10 09:56 PM EST
President Barack Obama wants a bipartisan deal on health reform, but trial lawyers don’t want him to deal on a top Republican priority: tort reform.
Trial lawyers defeated President George W. Bush’s push for medical liability reform and successfully lobbied to water down tort reform provisions in healthcare reform bills this Congress. But the battle is far from over.
And in an odd twist, a longtime ally of the trial lawyers could be the one to resurrect the idea -- President Barack Obama.
“I would hope this would be an area we just don’t go,” said Linda Lipsen, vice president for public affairs at the American Association for Justice, the trade group for trial attorneys.
Lipsen said. “The last thing Congress should be doing is eliminating people’s rights when the real issue is safety in hospitals.”
Obama’s hints that he is willing to make a deal with Republicans on medical malpractice reform has got physicians and trial lawyers scratching their heads.
As recently as Tuesday, Obama floated the possibility of offering an olive branch to Republicans on malpractice reform as a gesture of bipartisanship. “I've said from the beginning of this debate I'd be willing to work on that,” Obama remarked during a press briefing.
Retiring Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.) has recently indicated he is open to a healthcare compromise, stressing the need for malpractice reform to be included.
The White House announced on Friday that it will post a detailed health reform proposal online before the Feb. 25 bipartisan health summit, which Gregg was not invited to. It is unclear if that plan will be Obama’s own proposal or a merged version of the House and Senate-passed bills.
In an interview on Federal News Radio on Friday, Democratic strategist Bob Weiner said Obama should strike a deal on tort reform. He noted that Gail Wilensky, head of the Medicare and Medicaid agency in the first Bush administration, recently said Democrats could have gotten Republican votes if they had compromised on medical liability.
Weiner, who worked in the Clinton White House, said, “Why don’t we give a little on that and put some limit on [caps] and then get all of this national health insurance coverage for people and protect them with it? It’s not that much of a price. That’s part of the sausage-making that I think we could done that actually might have made a difference.”
Although Obama has repeatedly cited medical malpractice reform as a possible area of compromise with the GOP, he has not explained where he sees the middle ground and, indeed, has rejected Republicans’ top priority in this area: the hard-dollar caps on lawsuit awards in malpractice cases long sought by the physician and business lobbies.
But officials from pro- and anti-malpractice reform camps agree that, beyond the modest measures already in the healthcare reform bills that passed Congress and some demonstration projects under way at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Obama has not give a clear indication of what sort of offer he is willing to make.
Asked whether they were aware of any new malpractice reform proposals from the Obama administration, these officials professed they were aware of none.
“I haven’t heard anything like that,” Lipsen said.
“Not that I know of,” said Lisa Rickard, president of the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform, a proponent of limits on malpractice lawsuit awards.
“We haven’t seen any substantial proposal that supports his rhetoric,” said Kurt Bardella, a spokesman for Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), who has been a critic of the Obama administration’s stance on malpractice reform. “We have been waiting for his follow through and that’s what we have yet to see,” Bardella said.
Based on Obama’s oft-stated views on federal policy governing malpractice lawsuits, the trial lawyers likely have little to worry about. “I don’t think he’ll shock the world and come out and embrace caps,” Rickard said.
Obama indicated he could embrace malpractice proposals that “make my party a little bit uncomfortable.” Unlikely though it is that Obama would reverse positions on malpractice lawsuit caps or other proposals, it would not mark the first time he aggravated his liberal allies during the healthcare reform debate.
Despite campaigning against taxation of employer-sponsored health insurance, Obama put himself at odds with unions by endorsing a Senate-passed excise tax on high-cost insurance plans that organized labor and most House Democrats passed. The White House also struck a controversial deal to win the support of the pharmaceutical industry for healthcare reform, frustrating liberals who think Obama went too light on their long-time nemesis.
The House and Senate bills each contain provisions aiming to improve patient safety and offering grants to states that develop alternate ways to resolve disputes over medical errors. Proponents of broader malpractice reforms dismiss these proposals as inadequate while trial lawyers have rejected another possible compromise, the creation of special “health courts” that would hear cases and medical errors and malpractice.
Moving toward the middle on medical malpractice reform is no guarantee of winning GOP support, however. Any concession that Republicans would view as meaningful would prompt an outcry from Democratic lawmakers and the trial bar, a close ally of the party.
“I don’t see that as a credible place to go if the object is to pass the bill,” said Lipsen, noting that legislation to enact malpractice award caps could even not advance through the Republican-controlled Senate several times in the last decade.
Moreover, Republicans have stood so strongly opposed to the Democratic healthcare bills that even full capitulation on medical malpractice reform would not produce instant bipartisanship, Rickard noted. “There are so many issues that are in dispute in this bill,” she said, “that malpractice reform in and of itself isn’t going to overcome them.”
Maryland has one of the most captured legal systems in the nation. The Maryland Lawyer's Guild is infused in our Maryland Assembly and Baltimore City Hall an is responsible for this complete dismantling of our public justice system. It is far-right to have such a breakdown in public justice with the legal profession feeling unwilling or unable to pursue REAL civil justice.
That said, there are lawyers in Maryland really fighting to preserve what remains of a civil justice system. I have witnessed testimony at Maryland Assembly where lawyers for low-income citizens are fighting the policies coming from Maryland Assembly----and often coming from Baltimore City pols to Maryland Assembly----that deliberately make representing Maryland citizens in all matters civil or criminal too expensive----too prohibitive----and in Baltimore's case the move to deny the basic civil rights to legal defender presence because the zero tolerance policing has broken this city's ability to provide basic legal rights.
THERE ARE LAWYERS SHOUTING OUT----BUT THE MARYLAND BAR ASSOCIATION IS CAPTURED TO CORPORATE LAW ONLY.
We had a private lawyer shout out when our Maryland Attorney General Frosh illegally pushed a law under the guise of increasing oversight of fraud while trying to take away the ability of our private lawyers to try cases of corporate fraud and government corruption.
THIS IS CRITICAL FOLKS----I DON'T CARE IF YOU ARE REPUBLICAN OR NOT----NO ONE WANTS ALL OF OUR PUBLIC JUSTICE SYSTEM DISMANTLED----AS GLOBAL POLS HAVE BEEN DOING THESE FEW DECADES----AND TRIAL LAWYERS HAVE BE USED TO SUBPRIME THE CIVIL LITIGATION PROCESS TO MAKE PEOPLE HATE IT.
It makes sense if you have a very corporate state as Maryland----you have a legal environment that does not see value-added as public justice. Know what? There are civil justice lawyers dying to get out of this repressive system and to be real civil and criminal justice lawyers.
The Maryland Association for Justice, Inc. (MAJ) represents over 1,300 trial attorneys throughout the state of Maryland. MAJ advocates for the preservation of the civil justice system, the protection of the rights of consumers and the education and professional development of its members.
The Maryland Association for Justice is dedicated to improving the civil justice system through legislative advocacy and the professional development of attorneys who represent the injured.
The Maryland Association for Justice, Inc. strives continually to ensure that our membership, board, officers, staff, activities, committees and sections reflect and serve the diverse population of our state. We have an awareness of groups who have historically been discriminated against in our society. We seek to include those persons in all activities of the Association, thereby augmenting the diversity of the organization as a whole. In doing so, we will enhance our collective wisdom, strength and effectiveness.
Founded in 1954 by a small group of trial attorneys, MAJ was first known as the Maryland Plaintiff's Bar Association. As an unincorporated organization, this small group of lawyers held monthly meetings, invited guest speakers and spent many hours discussing trial tactics, settlement strategies, various points of law and legislative activity in Annapolis. Later, the Association incorporated as a non-profit, professional association and renamed itself the Maryland Trial Lawyers Association while developing a cooperative relationship with the American Association for Justice (AAJ). On October 29, 2008, the Association changed its name from the Maryland Trial Lawyers Association to the Maryland Association for Justice, Inc.
Click here for full text of the MAJ Bylaws.
2012-2013 Strategic Plan
Click here for an overview of the 2012-2013 MAJ Strategic Plan.
REMEMBER----THE COSTS OF HEALTH CARE IN THE US HAS BEEN DRIVEN BY HEALTH INDUSTRY FRAUD AND PROFITEERING----TWO THINGS A FUNCTIONING LEGAL SYSTEM WOULD HAVE BEEN FIGHTING AND DID UNDER SOCIAL DEMOCRATS-----CORPORATE POLS AND REPUBLICANS ARE NOW TELLING US IT IS OUR CIVIL JUSTICE SYSTEM THAT IS THE PROBLEM.
Republicans have always sold their voters against any legal actions that take from corporate wealth and profit so here is a Republican article written by a Wall Street think tank THE MANHATTAN INSTITUTE----telling us that the costs of health care are to be blamed on those horrible trial lawyers and TORT SYSTEM.
We can equate the implosion of our once quality Federal Housing Administration with a few decades of massive Wall Street fraud with subprime mortgage loans to what has happened to our trial lawyer and Tort system----look at all the adds on TV for one class action lawsuit after another for medical and PHARMA malpractice and you see the subpriming of our US civil justice system. It is deliberate and those trial lawyer firms allowed to become rich could care less if civil law disappears----they have moved on to global corporate law.
'January 1, 2006
An October 2005 report from the Manhattan Institute shows the efforts of trial lawyers to target health care providers for profit are raising U.S. health care costs'.
When a candidate for Mayor of Baltimore shouts AUDITS, AUDITS, AUDITS----and says they are going to reform the criminal justice system but never talks about any of this-----what does reform look like? First, you have to acknowledge all these massive frauds----these massive abuses of our civil justice system is occurring.
Litigation Raising Health Care Costs, Study Says
January 1, 2006
In October 2005 report from the Manhattan Institute shows the efforts of trial lawyers to target health care providers for profit are raising U.S. health care costs.Trial Lawyers, Inc.: Health Care, from scholars at the institute's Center for Legal Policy, concludes this area of litigation is significant because "health care represents over 15 percent of the U.S. economy, up from only 5 percent in 1961" according to U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) data. "While the excesses of the litigation industry alone cannot explain America's mounting medical costs," the study notes, "litigation is a large, and growing, contributor to our health-care bill."
'Tort Tax' Raises Costs
Medical malpractice liability--"the 'tort tax' on doctors and hospitals, whose costs constitute the majority of health expenses," as it is described in the report--has grown much faster than overall health care inflation, according to 2004 data from the global management corporation Tillinghast-Towers Perrin. Medical malpractice liability alone constitutes more than 10 percent of the U.S. tort tax, which by 2003 represented more than $3,300 for the average family of four, according to Tillinghast-Towers Perrin.
Medical malpractice tort claims awarded by courts, as well as pretrial settlements, provide U.S. trial lawyers with their largest health care sector revenue stream, according to the Manhattan Institute report. Litigation over pharmaceuticals and medical devices also exacts a staggering cost on the industry, notes James R. Copland, director of Manhattan's Center for Legal Policy.
The drug maker Wyeth, for example, has set aside a reserve of $21 billion to deal with litigation related to the obesity medication Fen-Phen. Merck's exposure to Vioxx lawsuits may total as much as $50 billion, the report notes.
"Such figures are astronomical in comparison with these companies' individual budgets, representing nine to twelve times each company's annual research and development costs," the report notes. "In fact, since each drug was widely used for only about four years, the approximate annualized liability cost of these two drugs comes to almost $18 billion--equivalent to 10 percent of the annual revenues for the pharmaceutical industry as a whole."
Looking ahead, the big story for 2006 will be Vioxx litigation, says Center for Legal Policy Director James Copland.
"Expect Merck to lose more multimillion dollar verdicts (though it will win its share, too)," Copland predicted. "Unless Congress acts to correct mass tort litigation for pharmaceuticals, the cost of Vioxx lawsuits for Merck will continue to rise--to $50 billion or more."
Defensive Medicine Costly
The direct costs of health care litigation only scratch the surface of the toll such lawsuits exact on the U.S. economy and on health care, the Manhattan Institute report emphasizes. "Med-mal lawsuits tend to inflate health care costs by encouraging 'defensive medicine'--unnecessary procedures and referrals that doctors and hospitals prescribe in order to limit their exposure to future litigation," explains the report. "Studies suggest that defensive medicine costs are several times higher than the direct liability costs themselves."
The report contends consumers are not made safer by product liability litigation over drugs and medical devices: "Such suits inevitably drive innovation from the marketplace that would lead to net health improvements--not only for U.S. society but for the entire world."
Since any drug manufacturer might be held accountable for unanticipated liability of the magnitude of Vioxx and Fen-Phen, the study notes, every drug company will consider such numbers in its research and investment decisions ... and many drugs that would otherwise save lives or improve the quality of lives will never reach the market.
Defenders of tort litigation assert it has a deterrent effect on risky or negligent activity, which it undoubtedly does, Copland admitted. But "in our current civil justice system it also deters any activity that might lead to high-cost lawsuits, which is not at all the same thing as actual risk," he pointed out in an introduction to the report.
When a liability system punishes indiscriminately, it does not efficiently deter bad conduct but rather reduces health care access by reducing the supply of doctors, the report says. Fear of litigation also encourages the use of expensive, unnecessary, and often dangerous procedures, and it lowers the expected return from research into new medicines and medical devices that can save lives.
The report also notes the litigation industry "does a very poor job compensating the victims it professes to be protecting." Most medical malpractice claimants are not harmed by avoidable doctor error, and most medical malpractice victims never sue. Plaintiffs typically wait years to recover damages and typically receive less than 50 cents on the dollar, with lawyers' and administrative fees soaking up the majority of settlements and verdicts.
Lawsuits Threaten Vaccine Production
Medical malpractice litigation will continue to affect targeted specialties, such as obstetrics, neurology, and emergency room care, Copland said. The variation will be sizable among states. Some states, having passed recent tort reform legislation, will get better; others, like Wisconsin, have worsened their situation through judicial activism, noted Copland.
"Nationally, I wouldn't expect as rapid a rise in premiums as we have seen in recent years, because the past few years' rate increases have helped return insurers to a manageable position, and because I expect a flat-to-rising interest rate environment, which lowers the discounted cost of insurers' liabilities," Copland said.
"A key fight at the national level to watch in 2006 is whether the government can craft a coherent response to the potential avian flu outbreak," said Copland. "Vaccines are particularly susceptible to litigation, and although Congress has shielded some existing vaccines from liability, new vaccines and other drugs vital to public health threats remain vulnerable."
For those new to Maryland----Center Maryland is the global corporate politician----the neo-con/neo-liberal media outlet created under O'Malley and they push all these Clinton/Obama policy stances----it is like having a state version of MSNBC---the national neo-liberal outlet. Maryland Maternity Access is yet another corporate non-profit posing progressive in wanting to protect mothers and infants----and they are the push to end trial lawyers and TORT in Maryland pretending it is responsible for the costs of health care for mothers and infants.
LOOK---THERE IS CATHERINE PUGH POSING PROGRESSIVE IN THIS MOVE TO END WHAT LITTLE PUBLIC JUSTICE WE HAVE LEFT IN MARYLAND AND ESPECIALLY BALTIMORE.
Of course it is Baltimore where much of the need for mothers and infants and health care lie. Killing civil justice around these health issues as the solution-----VERY RIGHT-WING CORPORATE.
The costs of litigation has hit OB-GYN doctors---I'm not sure why other than citizens harmed at birth by mistakes carry the costs with them all there lives. As a social Democrat I think oversight and accountability will reduce this problem with our OB-GYNs and expanding to midwifery and other home birthing structures may relieve these expenses.
Republican groups like Maryland Maternity Access want to move yet another civil justice structure to arbitration and a pooled resource for funding in these birthing injuries that no one believes will be maintained. If we cannot pay legal awards then we know these policies of arbitration will not last. I encourage all low-income families to beware of this Republican health tactic being pushed by Baltimore's Republicans running as Democrats. We want doctors policing their bad professionals----we want trail lawyers to stop gaming the award system to where it costs to much and citizens get little. We want oversight and accountability to see that both of the above occur.
MARYLAND MATERNITY WITH CATHERINE PUGH SENDS OUT A MAYORAL QUESTIONNAIRE THAT MOVES A CANDIDATE TO SOUND UNCARING OF MOTHERS AND INFANTS IF YOU DO NOT SUPPORT TORT REFORM AND ENDING TRIAL LAWYER LAWSUITS.
We are the
Maryland Maternity Access Coalition,
a broad coalition that supports innovative and even-handed reforms to our state’s medical liability system, like the Maryland Birth Injury Fund, currently being considered in the MD General Assembly. Paid for by hospitals, the fund will accomplish two important goals:
- Ensure more children who suffer birth injuries will get the lifetime care they need because payment is based on the injury, not the outcome of a lawsuit. In a court case, the lawyers get to keep up to 40% of the legal award, but a Birth Injury Fund would pay the family directly.
- Protect access to high-quality maternity health care in our communities by preventing birth hospital closures.
In Maryland, access to high quality maternity care is seriously threatened. Maryland’s aggressive and unsustainable litigation environment is putting Maryland’s most vulnerable mothers and babies at risk. Join us in working to pass the MD Birth Injury Fund!
BIRTH INJURY FUND FACT SHEET BIRTH INJURY FUND HOUSE BILL 377
Beth Laverick, owner of B Scene Events & Promotions, has been in the event business for 12 years and her passion for events continues to grow. Beth’s diverse background includes event producing and management, sales, marketing, catering, staffing, and promotions. Before coming to MMAC, Beth was the Marketing Manager at Waterfront Partnership and formerly worked as a staff member at Downtown Baltimore Family Alliance, an organization that works to improve education, transportation, cultural opportunities, and neighborhood cohesion in the Baltimore area.
As volunteer president of the Maryland Maternity Access Coalition, Beth works tirelessly to protect access to maternity care and inspire others to take action on this important issue. Deeply concerned about the troubled state of Maryland's medical liability system, she is an advocate for helping families and seeking commonsense reforms.
When she is not working, Beth, a proud Baltimore City resident, enjoys spending time with her husband and two children and enjoying all there is to enjoy in Charm City.