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Cap on Non-economic Damages OK'd by House (Mar 17, 2011)

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Injured Oklahomans would receive no more than $350,000 for so-called pain and suffering under legislation passed by the Oklahoma House.

House members approved the cap on non-economic damages by a vote of 57-40 on Wednesday. A day earlier, the House had rejected the amendment that contained the cap by a vote of 68-32.

The bill doesn't affect other damages suffered by injured persons like lost wages, loss of future wages and medical expenses. The bill contains exceptions to the pain and suffering cap in cases of gross negligence, recklessness, intentional acts or malicious conduct.

Opponents, including Rep. Randy Grau of Edmond, say the cap on non-economic damages may be unconstitutional.

But Floor Leader Dan Sullivan of Tulsa says it will help attract businesses and jobs to the state.

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