The Daily

The Battle of Evermore: How the Insurance Lobby Rules Florida

The end of the year brings legislative sessions to a close, setting up final face-offs between special interests affected by pending legislation.

Back in the Spring, I wrote in separate posts about a long hoped-for consumer win in Florida to change unfair wrongful death laws:

Turns out, politics isn’t the only place where misinformation is used to ply the soil that grows bad ideas. In the 1980’s, health care providers and insurance carriers deliberately and falsely yelled that the sky was falling due to negligence claims and payouts. Their solution? Caps on damages in the most righteous and significant cases. And as it turns out down the road, the “crisis” was just a public relations ploy to immunize themselves from the costs of medical error. And the con continues.


For decades, families of medical malpractice victims in Florida have suffered without a remedy under an unfair law that treats them differently from other grieving families. Florida’s wrongful death act exempts negligent health care providers from righteous claims that would exist if anyone else caused their parent’s death. The pain they experience is no different from the pain suffered by families victimized by a car accident or equipment malfunction. But in Florida’s never-ending quest for “tort reform” and special protections – even immunity – for powerful special interests, their pain is treated as non-existent.

That may be about to change.

Politicians paid by the insurance lobby killed that victims’ rights bill in committee even though versions passed both the House and Senate.

Legislative History and Death of Florida HB 6011

This happens in other states.

The New York Trial Lawyers Association, various law firms and their allies in the Legislature have also been ratcheting up the pressure on Hochul to approve the Grieving Families Act. “This year we passed the Grieving Families Act because we all know that the value of a person’s life is more than their paycheck,” state Sen. Sean M. Ryan, D-Buffalo.

Here is the New York story

New York Wrongful Death Changes Setup Lobbying Battle

In a political environment flush with insurance industry cash where the rules are written by insurance lobbyists, victims of wrongful death have little chance on their own. Justice demands that you choose your lawyer carefully. Or, as the lyrics from the Led Zeppelin song go,

Oh dance in the dark of night
Sing to the mornin’ light.
The magic runes are writ in gold
To bring the balance back
Bring it back