LBFC Report Finds Increasing Sovereign Immunity Caps for Local and State Governments Will Lead to Increase Costs, Higher Taxes

A recent report by the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee (LBFC) found that the current sovereign immunity caps on damages are adequate to compensate more than 99 percent of personal injury cases brought against state and local governments. Personal injury damages against state and local governments are capped to protect taxpayers who foot the bill for such lawsuits.

Additionally, the report showed that an increase in cap levels would likely lead to higher taxes and fees for taxpayers! In a survey of local governments, more than 80 percent responded that an increase in the liability caps would negatively impact services, with 75 percent saying it would likely lead to higher taxes and fees. 

Despite finding that the current cap levels are fair for the vast majority of cases, the report recommends creating a second tier of higher damage caps for extraordinary cases. This is likely to please plaintiffs’ attorneys who have been urging the General Assembly to increase the caps limiting damages against state and local governments in order to secure bigger personal paydays. PCCJR is fighting back against this effort by reminding lawmakers of the negative impacts such a move would have on state and local government entities and taxpayers alike.

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