Jottings By An Employer's Lawyer

Thursday, January 02, 2003

Even Doctors Can Be Sympathetic Plaintiffs

Usually when it comes to million dollar jury verdicts and doctors, it is complaints of run away juries and rising malpractice premiums. However, at least one doc probably has a different viewpoint after a Florida jury awarded him over $30 million for defamation and negligent supervision. You can read the story from the Saratoga Herald Tribune.

Although it is logical to think it would take a long trial to result in a big award, this was a 3 day trial. Even though it was not his legal claim, there was an element of whistle blowing, as he had contacted OSHA to complain about dangerous conditions at the defendant hospital. Even though these verdicts rarely stand in full, juries repeatedly show that the right set of circumstances can cause an immense negative reaction to the actions of employers. And that whistle blowers are, at least for the moment, the latest American hero.


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