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July 2012, Vol. 48, No. 7

Ethics and Professionalism

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Med-mal early offer program becomes law in New Hampshire

Allison Torres Burtka

New Hampshire is the first state to enact a law that creates an “early offer” program for patients injured by medical malpractice. It allows injured patients to choose an early settlement offer over litigation.  The law “may do great harm to people with substantial injuries who don’t understand their rights,” said Manchester, N.H., lawyer Leslie Nixon. It excludes certain types of damages and includes a “loser pays” provision that requires the patient to post a bond if he or she rejects the offer and pursues litigation.

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