A May 23 Indiana Court of Appeals decision in Robertson vs. B.O. could mean the difference between the Patient’s Compensation Fund (PCF) paying $650,000 and $0 in the case.
“This translates to money staying in the pockets of physicians,” said Julie Reed, ISMA general counsel.
The court’s unanimous opinion is consistent with the amicus curiae (friend of the court) brief filed by the ISMA.
The issue is whether the PCF can submit certain expert testimony to defend the amount of damages for which it’s responsible. Although the trial court said no, the Court of Appeals disagreed.
The recent opinion often mirrored the ISMA’s brief, citing many times the Indiana Supreme Court’s 2009 decision in the Herbst case, in which the ISMA also participated.
“If it weren’t for our involvement in both of these cases, it’s clear that we wouldn’t have seen the same result in this case today,” Reed said. “This decision illustrates the assistance we provide in these types of cases and the money we save doctors.”
It also shows the lasting legal and financial impact these decisions can have for years to come. This case now goes back to trial court for further proceedings.