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Ohio Supreme Court Upholds Crucial Tort Reform

On Thursday, the Ohio Supreme Court upheld an important medical malpractice reform law as constitutional. In the 6-1 Ruther v. Kaiser ruling, the Court upheld the law and affirmed the right of the Ohio General Assembly to pass legislation protecting medical providers from unreasonable lawsuits.

The state law in question prevents medical liability suits from being filed more than four years after an alleged incident. Without the law, would-be plaintiffs would be permitted to be file malpractice suits years—even decades—after medical records and witnesses may no longer be available.

Ohio’s physician and small business organizations—including Ohio ACEP—have been watching the progress of the case ever since the tort reform law was challenged by a Warren County appellate court.

Ohio ACEP was part of a friend-of-the-court brief urging the Ohio Supreme Court to reverse the lower court’s ruling. Other organizations included in the brief were the Ohio Hospital Association, American Hospital Association, Ohio State Medical Association, American Medical Association, Ohio Osteopathic Association and the Ohio Alliance for Civil Justice, of which Ohio ACEP is a member.

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