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Florida Legislators Propose Bill To Change Free Kill Law

Posted by Frank Spector | May 02, 2024 | 0 Comments

What is Florida's So Called Free Kill Law?

In Florida, the current law is that if a parent loses a child due to medical malpractice and the child is 25 or older, the parent cannot recover pain and suffering damages, Also, if a child 25 or older loses a parent, and the parent is unmarried, the adult child cannot recover pain and suffering damages. According to a recent article, there was a tragic case of a 25 year old who was injured in a car accident in Orlando.  At the hospital, she was left unattended and died from massive internal bleeding. When the parents consulted a lawyer, they were told that there was no case because of the Florida law. 

How Could This Be?

Wrongful death laws differ widely from state to state. In some states like Maryland, parents and children can sue for pain and suffering damages for wrongful death. This only makes sense. The surviving family remembers will have to live with the grief that their loved ones died due to medical negligence.  But not all states allow this. Florida is a prime example. Wrongful death is created by statutes so each state's legislature can create whatever laws they want. This cannot be changed by the courts, it has to be changed by the legislatures. 

What Else Does The Florida Bill Do?

The proposed bill, however, includes a cap on pain and suffering damages of $500,000. There is great opposition to this because it is though to be such a low amount. Damage caps are widespread around the country in order to put a ceiling on the amount of money a jury can award. These caps are arbitrary and there is no mathematical justification for them. The Center For Justice and Democracy has cited specific examples showing that damage caps do not reduce health costs or malpractice premiums. We all can see how expensive medical care care costs are. Our health care premiums keep going up as well. Damage caps take away the rights of juries to determine appropriate money damages. If jury awards are thought to be too high, the judge has the authority to reduce the amount or order a new trial.


The lesson here is that laws affecting your rights are being passed, changed or repealed without the public even knowing about. Get in touch with your legislators and ask them their position on tort reform. 


About the Author

Frank Spector

Welcome to my profile page. Choosing a lawyer is a big decision. Here is some information so you can get to know me better. I am the third generation of lawyers in my family. I saw how lawyers can help people get justice for their injuries. So for over 30 years, I have helped those injured by m...


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