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Personal Injury · Wrongful Death · Medical Malpractice

Federal Hearing Set Challenging Florida’s New Medical Malpractice Law

August A Tallahassee-based federal judge has scheduled
a Sept. 18 hearing in one of a series of lawsuits aimed at blocking a
controversial medical-malpractice law that Gov. Rick Scott signed in June. U.S.
District Judge Robert Hinkle will hear arguments about issuing a temporary
restraining order and preliminary injunction, according to information posted
Thursday in an online docket. Opponents filed five lawsuits across the state on
July 1, the day the medical-malpractice law took effect. The challenges contend
that the law could violate patients’ privacy rights because of changes dealing
with a legal concept known as “ex parte communications.” Critics say
the law could lead to the improper disclosure of personal health information to
defense lawyers representing doctors or other health providers. Supporters of
the law have argued, in part, that it would give defense lawyers access to
information that plaintiffs’ lawyers already can review and that it is a
fairness issue.

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