Plan would raise Kansas limits on lawsuit damages

Topeka State Capital Building

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas Senate has given first-round approval to a bill increasing the state’s limits on some damages in lawsuits but makes other changes in evidence rules.

The Senate’s voice vote Wednesday advanced the bill to a final vote Thursday, when approval would send the measure to the House.

The bill is partly a response to a 2012 Kansas Supreme Court ruling in a medical malpractice lawsuit. The court upheld the state’s $250,000 limit on non-economic damages such as pain and suffering in personal injury lawsuits.

But the court also suggested that the limit might not remain constitutional because of inflation. The bill would boost the cap to $300,000 in July and $350,000 in July 2022.

The increase is tied to changes in evidence rules sought by business groups.

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