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Adjudicate, don't legislate

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Two recent Louisiana Supreme Court decisions have sent a clear message to the lower courts (in particular to the Third Circuit Court of Appeal): “Adjudicate, don’t legislate.”  

In the first of those decisions, Oliver v. Magnolia Clinic, the majority told the lower courts that “trial courts and courts of appeal are bound to follow the last expression of law of the Louisiana Supreme Court.” In this case, the lower courts had not. The opinion went on to revisit its reasoning in a prior case to remind the courts of their obligation to follow the latest expression of law regarding the constitutionality of the state’s $500,000 cap on medical malpractice claims.

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