2017 Nevada Revised Statutes
Chapter 42 - Damages
NRS 42.021 - Actions based on professional negligence of providers of health care: Introduction of certain evidence relating to collateral benefits; restrictions on source of collateral benefits; payment of future damages by periodic payments.

Universal Citation: NV Rev Stat § 42.021 (2017)

1. In an action for injury or death against a provider of health care based upon professional negligence, if the defendant so elects, the defendant may introduce evidence of any amount payable as a benefit to the plaintiff as a result of the injury or death pursuant to the United States Social Security Act, any state or federal income disability or worker’s compensation act, any health, sickness or income-disability insurance, accident insurance that provides health benefits or income-disability coverage, and any contract or agreement of any group, organization, partnership or corporation to provide, pay for or reimburse the cost of medical, hospital, dental or other health care services. If the defendant elects to introduce such evidence, the plaintiff may introduce evidence of any amount that the plaintiff has paid or contributed to secure the plaintiff’s right to any insurance benefits concerning which the defendant has introduced evidence.

2. A source of collateral benefits introduced pursuant to subsection 1 may not:

(a) Recover any amount against the plaintiff; or

(b) Be subrogated to the rights of the plaintiff against a defendant.

3. In an action for injury or death against a provider of health care based upon professional negligence, a district court shall, at the request of either party, enter a judgment ordering that money damages or its equivalent for future damages of the judgment creditor be paid in whole or in part by periodic payments rather than by a lump-sum payment if the award equals or exceeds $50,000 in future damages.

4. In entering a judgment ordering the payment of future damages by periodic payments pursuant to subsection 3, the court shall make a specific finding as to the dollar amount of periodic payments that will compensate the judgment creditor for such future damages. As a condition to authorizing periodic payments of future damages, the court shall require a judgment debtor who is not adequately insured to post security adequate to assure full payment of such damages awarded by the judgment. Upon termination of periodic payments of future damages, the court shall order the return of this security, or so much as remains, to the judgment debtor.

5. A judgment ordering the payment of future damages by periodic payments entered pursuant to subsection 3 must specify the recipient or recipients of the payments, the dollar amount of the payments, the interval between payments, and the number of payments or the period of time over which payments will be made. Such payments must only be subject to modification in the event of the death of the judgment creditor. Money damages awarded for loss of future earnings must not be reduced or payments terminated by reason of the death of the judgment creditor, but must be paid to persons to whom the judgment creditor owed a duty of support, as provided by law, immediately before the judgment creditor’s death. In such cases, the court that rendered the original judgment may, upon petition of any party in interest, modify the judgment to award and apportion the unpaid future damages in accordance with this subsection.

6. If the court finds that the judgment debtor has exhibited a continuing pattern of failing to make the periodic payments as specified pursuant to subsection 5, the court shall find the judgment debtor in contempt of court and, in addition to the required periodic payments, shall order the judgment debtor to pay the judgment creditor all damages caused by the failure to make such periodic payments, including, but not limited to, court costs and attorney’s fees.

7. Following the occurrence or expiration of all obligations specified in the periodic payment judgment, any obligation of the judgment debtor to make further payments ceases and any security given pursuant to subsection 4 reverts to the judgment debtor.

8. As used in this section:

(a) “Future damages” includes damages for future medical treatment, care or custody, loss of future earnings, loss of bodily function, or future pain and suffering of the judgment creditor.

(b) “Periodic payments” means the payment of money or delivery of other property to the judgment creditor at regular intervals.

(c) “Professional negligence” means a negligent act or omission to act by a provider of health care in the rendering of professional services, which act or omission is the proximate cause of a personal injury or wrongful death. The term does not include services that are outside the scope of services for which the provider of health care is licensed or services for which any restriction has been imposed by the applicable regulatory board or health care facility.

(d) “Provider of health care” means a physician licensed under chapter 630 or 633 of NRS, dentist, licensed nurse, dispensing optician, optometrist, registered physical therapist, podiatric physician, licensed psychologist, chiropractor, doctor of Oriental medicine, medical laboratory director or technician, licensed dietitian or a licensed hospital and its employees.

(Added to NRS by 2004 initiative petition, Ballot Question No. 3; A 2011, 1511)

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