Like many legal issues, the mentioning of tort reform has the ability to stir up controversial debates. Tort reform addresses civil lawsuits of various degrees such as medical malpractice, automobile accidents, and personal injury. Therefore supporters of tort reform seek to ensure laws are changed that limits the amount of damage recovered. Those who are against tort reform believe their Constitutional rights are violated. Dan Zegart The article written by Dan Zegart exposes the reader to the distraught tort reform has on those suffering from civil lawsuits that do not make it to court.
Such as the case of Jacqueline Smith who’s mother was raped in a nursing home. Cases such as hers, and many others, do not make it to court because malpractice cases are generally “barred from court” (Zegart, 2004). The article goes on further to mention how President Bush is credited for over thirty states supporting tort reform. Zegart mentions throughout the article on several occasions the Bush Administration and his position on law restrictions as the governor and as the President. Noting that the President’s campaign made fictitious claims blaming medical liability as healthcare’s biggest cost further supports his position on the issue.
The article goes on further to mention how tort reform has had very little, if any, affect on insurance premiums or the number of malpractice filings. Much is offered to the reader to understand the tone of the article is to stand against tort reform. Illustrating the unfairness of those who suffer from malpractice or defective products is a great way to gain supporters to stand against tort reform. Along with that, reducing the amount a person may be compensated and removing the jury from hearing cases help strengthen Zegart’s position. Diving further into the goal of civil liability would have possibly made the article much stronger.
Companies and doctors should be held accountable and paying for the cost of damage is only fair. When there is a fear of negative consequences, such as civil lawsuits, it helps regulate the quality put into making products and quality of care rendered. Tort Reform The article titled Tort Reform takes on a question and answer format allowing the reader to feel as though all their questions regarding tort reform can be answered. The mater of fact approach sets a completely different tone than Zegart’s work. The article seeks to inform the reader about tort reform and strives to set the record straight, tackling all areas.
The fact that this piece uses maps, charts, and graphs to illustrate key points makes it highly effective for those that are visual learners. Many individuals retain more information when they can see it. Each area of tort reform had a designated question that was answered thoroughly. Sufficient detail was spent on providing the reader with sharp, relevant facts surrounding the questions being asked. Nothing short of pro-reform, the article ends with the views of Democrats and Republicans.
Not a bad way to end the article, however, this paragraph could have contained given the reader a little more. Additionally, the use of maps and charts are helpful but it began to feel like overkill. It doesn’t take tons of illustrations to drive a point home. Lastly, the article did not provide any stories that demonstrated the effectiveness of tort reform. There was a mention of punitive damages attached to the O. J. Simpson case but the reader was left with nothing compelling to tie in the reference. Whether pro-reform or pro anything, using real stories helps the reader connect more. Upon reading both articles, my general knowledge of tort reform was limited to malpractices lawsuits only.
Initially, my personal viewpoint agreed with those against tort reform. My position on the issue has shifted and now leans more towards supporting tort reform. The primary cause for my change of position is due to my lack of complete knowledge prior to reading both articles. I do not feel trial 1 / 2 lawyers abused the system as some who support tort reform may suggest. Large corporations and insurance companies seem to be the primary target of those protected by tort reform. It is my belief that companies are not so negligent that they mass-produce products that cause harm or danger to consumers.
The same applies to doctors who perform high-risk procedures. Ignorance is part of the equation as to why such topics lead to heated debates. Educating ourselves on issues that are mainstream should be priority so that we may take the stand we truly believe in and not that of someone else. References News Batch. (n. d. ). Tort Reform. Retrieved October 28, 2014, from www. newsbatch. com/tort. htm Zegart, D. (2004, October 25). The Right Wing’s Drive for ‘Tort Reform’ | The Nation. Retrieved October 28, 2014, from http://www. thenation. com/article/right-wings-drive-tort- reform? page=0,5# POWERED BY TCPDF (WWW. TCPDF. ORG)