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Thursday, May 31, 2007

Ind. Decisions - Acceptable fee arrangements in medical malpractice actions

In Re Daniel B. Stephens is an opinion on the motion to intervene by the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association in this attorney disciplinary action. It is a 13 -page per curiam ruling, including a 1-page concurring option by Chief Justice Shepard. I can't begin to explain it, but instead will quote the following:

Shepard, Chief Justice, concurring in result.
It is far from clear that today’s per curiam represents the best policy for determining reasonable fees at the intersection of Rule 1.5 and the medical malpractice statute. This process has morphed from an agreed-sanction disciplinary case into something that looks much like rule-making, except that it has lacked many of the steps thought useful for good rule-making. Partly for this reason, it does not answer a good many questions important to the topic. I join in the outcome largely because the submissions of the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association, especially the brief and the several affidavits, have been so persuasive and the per curiam tracks their re-quest. And because the defendants against whom they file claims (and their associations and re-lated institutions with apparent stake in the outcome) have elected to stand silent, and our Disci-plinary Commission has found itself in the awkward position of noting the interests of a client it does not represent, the General Assembly.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on May 31, 2007 01:52 PM
Posted to Ind. Sup.Ct. Decisions