A jury awarded a Florida couple $21 million after it found the doctor 90% negligent in misdiagnosing the child’s birth defect. Dr. Boris Kousseff failed to diagnose Daniel and Amara Estrada’s first son with a genetic disorder, Smith-Lemil-Opitz syndrome, which severely limits his ability to live a normal life. The doctor’s failure to diagnose the first child caused him to tell the Estrada’s that they would be able to have a second child without the disorder.
Because the Estrada’s were unaware of the genetic disorder they became pregnant and gave birth to a second child with the same genetic disorder as the first child. Now both children have to live there lives with constant care and attention. The jury awarded the family $21 million, which includes funds to care for the second child, however, Florida has caps on the amount a government agency can be forced to pay out for a claim against it. If the caps stay in place the Estrada’s will only be able to recover a mere $200,000, clearly insufficient money to cover care for their child.
The Estrada’s lawyer will now push lawmakers to change the law and allow the Estrada’s to recover the money they rightfully deserve. Allowing these and other caps keeps those at fault from being held accountable and it’s time to stop allowing them to hide behind these caps.