Medical Malpractice Insurance Primer
Mississippi Medical Malpractice Basics
- 4 companies comprise 56% of the Market.
- Premium rates have been decreasing since the passage of major tort reform.
- Number of practicing physicians: approximately 5,700
- Total premiums written in 2013: 75,144,971
In 2002 and then again in 2004, Mississippi passed tort reform act with specific provisions related to medical malpractice. These acts, among other things, placed caps on both non-economic and punitive damages. Non-economic damages (i.e., pain and suffering) are currently capped at $500,000, and punitive damages, rare in medical malpractice cases, are capped on a sliding scale based on the defendant’s net worth. In addition to these limits, Mississippi’s tort reform also forbade venue shopping, requiring malpractice suits to be filed in the county in which the alleged malpractice occurred. Since passing tort reform, the number of malpractice lawsuits has decreased dramatically. Further, that decrease in litigation has resulted in more insurance companies moving to the state, which has driven down insurance premium rates.
Statute of Limitations
In Mississippi, the basic statute of limitations requires that a claim be brought within two years after the alleged malpractice is discovered or should reasonably have been discovered. Beyond that, however, Mississippi has a statute of repose that requires any case accruing on or after July 1, 1998, to be brought no more than seven years after the date of the alleged malpractice. The only exceptions to this are cases wherein a foreign object was left in the body and cases in which the malpractice has been concealed through deliberate fraud. In those instances, the statute of limitations does not begin to run until the malpractice is discovered.
Further exceptions to the general rule are in place to extend the time for an action in cases involving minors or mentally incompetent persons. For a minor 6 years of age or younger, an action may be brought within two years of the child’s death or sixth birthday, whichever comes first. Likewise in the case of a mentally disabled person, an action may also be brought within two years of death or the recovery of competency.
The statute of limitations is the same for wrongful death as for malpractice.
Mississippi’s minimum liability limit for Medical Malpractice Insurance is 1,000,000 per occurrence and 3,000,000 per policy period. This $1M/$3M limit is fairly standard across most states that have limits.
Summary of the Mississippi Medical Malpractice Insurance Market
Medical malpractice insurance in Mississippi is moderately priced in comparison to most other states. Before the year 2003, Mississippi experienced a rapid rise in premium rates, a destabilized market, many frivolous lawsuits, and a looming shortage of doctors. Specifically, high-risk medical specialties (obstetrics/gynecology, neurosurgery, etc.) were rapidly losing numbers as doctors decided to relocate to states with lower rates and a friendlier risk environment. To end this trend, Mississippi passed the mentioned above, and the results have been very positive for doctors. Today, Mississippi has low premium rates, a stable, competitive market, limits on payouts, and a significantly reduced number of lawsuits being filed.
External Links & Resources for Mississippi Physicians & Surgeons
- Mississippi State Medical Association (MSMA)
- MGMA of Mississippi
- Mississippi Hospital Association (MHA)
- Mississippi Ambulatory Surgery Center Association (MASCA)
Want to learn more about medical malpractice insurance policies in your state? Call our main office in St. Louis, Missouri, at (855) 823-5283 for all your questions about malpractice policies in Mississippi. Get your free quote today!
START SAVING NOW!
Fill out the form below to request your free, no-obligation quotes or call us toll-free at (855) 823-5283 today.
Why Choose eQuoteMD™ to Obtain Lower Premiums for Medical Malpractice Insurance for your Practice?
Multiple Rate Quotes
Average Savings over 20%
Quality Coverage Guaranteed
Occurrence or Claims-Made
Tail Coverage Policies
Every Specialty & Facility
For first year physicians
Top Rated Companies