Should malpractice fund help balance budget?
A state appeals court refused to decide today on whether it was legal to take 200-million dollars from the medical malpractice fund to help balance the state budget. The Fourth District Appellate Court in Madison passed the case onto the Supreme Court. The appeals court said the justices should be the ones to decide whether it's legal for the governor and Legislature to raid state funds that certain groups of people pay money into. The court said the case might have broad implications not just for the malpractice fund - but for other state funds like those for highways. Doctors pay into the malpractice fund to cover payments ordered by juries in lawsuits. The State Medical Society claimed it was an illegal raid and sued the state. And when a circuit court said the transfer was legal, the doctors appealed.