New Jersey Medical Malpractice Laws

Punitive damages limited to five times the amount of compensatory damages or $350,000, whichever is greater. The statute of limitations is two years from when the cause of accrues (for a minor from birth: until age 13). There is modified joint and several liability (the court determines each party’s fault: the party recovering damages can recover the full amount of the damages from any defendant found to be at least 60% at fault; if less than 60%, only the percentage of damages attributable to that defendant’s fault can be recovered from that defendant). Attorney fees are limited to one-third of the first $500,000, 30% of the next $500,000, 25% of the next $500,000, 20% of the next $500,000, and an amount to be set by the court for amounts above $2 million (for minors or the mentally incapacitated, the attorney fees are limited to 25% if the claim is settled without a trial). There is no provision for periodic payments. The court may refer the claim to complementary dispute resolution. The claimant is required to provide an affidavit from a qualified expert based on reasonable probability that the care fell outside the acceptable standard of care.

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