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Host: Scott LaMar

Medical malpractice lawsuits; will venue shopping return?

Written by Merideth Bucher, Producer | Feb 13, 2019 4:41 AM

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What to look for on Smart Talk Wednesday, February 13, 2019:

In the early 2000s, a litigant preparing medical malpractice charges against a provider or care facility could, under certain conditions, file in a jurisdiction other than where the incident occurred.  This procedure is called venue shopping and it would usually happen in areas where juries had a reputation for siding with victims.

The practice of venue shopping was often credited with encouraging frivolous lawsuits that clogged the legal system for years. The problems it created compelled lawmakers to seek reforms. After the reforms passed in 2003, the number of medical malpractice lawsuits dropped significantly.

Not everyone thinks this is a good thing.

A committee of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court is now looking into eliminating the rule against venue shopping. The committee believes the possibility exists that the reduction in lawsuits means there may be fewer medical negligence victims receiving compensation.

Appearing on Smart Talk to discuss medical malpractice and venue shopping are Curt Schroder, Executive Director of the PA Coalition for Civil Justice Reform and Cliff Rieders, PA Association for Justice. 

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Cliff Rieders, PA Association for Justice, and Curt Schroder, Executive Director of the PA Coalition for Civil Justice Reform.

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