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Kentucky Medical Malpractice Insurance

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Cunningham Group Insurance Services, Elmwood Park, IL

Cunningham Group is here for Kentucky Physicians & Medical Professionals

We are Medical Malpractice Insurance Specialists helping physicians, medical professionals and medical groups across specialties get medical malpractice coverage at cost-effective rates – as well as providing valuable tools and resources.

Founded in 1947, our experienced liability specialists will customize a policy to the specific needs of you and your practice.
Get all the physician discounts you are entitled to, including: Risk Management, Claims-free and New to Practice.
We ensure you receive Prior Acts, so you avoid purchasing separate tail malpractice coverage.
We publish historic rate data for every county in the State, in partnership with the Medical Liability Monitor – the nation’s leading independent source of Medical Liability Insurance and healthcare industry news.
Access to ALL MD, our network of Connecticut healthcare defense lawyers. Free Practice Tools, including Online Patient Satisfaction Survey System and Risk Management tools.
Experience excellent customer service with our dedicated account team.

Cunningham Group Has You Covered

On average, Cunningham Group saves Physicians and Medical Professionals 20% on their medical malpractice insurance.

2021 Kentucky Malpractice Insurance Marketplace Guide

Kentucky Med-Mal Fast Facts

  • Most Common Limits of Liability: $1 million/$3 million
  • Major Malpractice Insurers:
    • Medical Protective Co.
    • ProAssurance Casualty Co.
    • State Volunteer Mutual
    • Kentuckiana Medical Reciprocal RRG
    • Homeland Insurance Co. of New York
  • Cost of Medical Malpractice Insurance: Moderate
  • Pending State Legislation in 2021 that could affect your rates?: No

The Kentucky Malpractice Landscape

The Kentucky malpractice landscape is generally stable. Rates are fairly constant throughout the state, and there are many carriers physicians can choose from. Unlike many other states, Kentucky has not been able to pass many reforms to its tort law or medical liability system. This has sometimes led to large awards in court. In recent years, claims in Kentucky have generally fallen in number, but not as quickly as in many other parts of the country.

Tort Reform in Kentucky

Reforms in Kentucky have been attempted many times, but without much success. Though the Bluegrass State managed to pass the Kentucky Medical Malpractice Act of 1976 in response to the medical malpractice crisis of the 1970s, most of its provisions were quickly ruled unconstitutional by the Kentucky Supreme Court. These provisions included a cap on noneconomic damages, creation of a patient compensation fund, a requirement that physicians carry insurance and creation of a joint underwriting association for physicians who had difficulty in obtaining policies at reasonable rates.

Unfortunately, the law ran up against the Kentucky Constitution, which has an “open courts” provision. According to Section 14 of the Kentucky Constitution, “All courts shall be open, and every person for an injury done him in his lands, goods, person or reputation, shall have remedy by due course of law, and right and justice administered without sale, denial or debate.” It further prohibits the legislature from limiting the amount to be recovered for injuries resulting in death, or for injuries to a person or property and to provide that “[w]henever the death of a person shall result from an injury inflicted by negligence or wrongful act, then, in every such case, damages may be recovered for such death, from the corporations and persons so causing the same.” In Section 54, the wording is even blunter, declaring “the General Assembly shall have no power to limit the amount to be recovered for injuries resulting in death, or for injuries to person or property.” These “open court” provisions clearly prohibit the General Assembly from creating a cap on noneconomic or punitive damages. Additionally, the creation of a joint underwriting association and requirement for physicians to carry insurance were ruled unconstitutional, as an unjustified exercise of the state’s police power to mandate the purchase of medical malpractice insurance.

Since then, Kentucky has made a few more attempts at reform. In 1988, the Kentucky General Assembly passed House Bill 551, which was intended to modify Kentucky law with respect to punitive damages. Once again, this was found to violate Kentucky’s “open courts” provision. In 2006, conservative legislatures attempted an amendment to the Kentucky Constitution so that caps on noneconomic and punitive damages could be imposed. However, they were unsuccessful in getting the measure on a ballot for voter approval.

Smaller reforms are still being attempted in Kentucky. In January 2016, a bill was introduced by Kentucky State Senator Ralph Alvarado to create a medical review panel system for use in medical malpractice litigation. Sen. Alvarado’s bill was ultimately passed by the Legislature, signed into law by the governor and became effective in June of 2017. The new tort reform revised the commonwealth’s medical malpractice system by creating a system of three-physician panels to review medical negligence claims for merit prior to their proceeding to the court system. The law requires plaintiffs to submit medical professional liability claims to the commonwealth’s Cabinet for Health & Family, which assigns the claim to a three-physician advisory panel that reviews the case and determines whether it has merit or is frivolous before issuing a nonbinding opinion as to whether the case should proceed. Within nine months of the panel selection, it is expected to issue its opinion. If the claim proceeds to court, the trial judge would decide the admissibility of the panel’s conclusion.

Of course, the medical review panel requirement was challenged in court, and Circuit Judge Shepherd ruled the law was unconstitutional in October of 2017 because it makes it more difficult for people to file lawsuits. His order banned the commonwealth from enforcing the law. “The effect of the medical review panel process is not the reduction of frivolous negligence claims, but rather, the erection of barriers to the court system,” Shepherd’s order read. “Those that cannot afford the additional delays and costs should not be prevented from pursuing their constitutional right to a ‘remedy by due course of law.’”

In November of 2017, the Kentucky Appeals Court issued an order allowing the enforcement of the medical review panel tort reform while it reviews an appeal of Shepherd’s ruling. The Appeals Court order means that, for now, the medical review process continues. According to filed court documents, there were at least 89 pending medical liability lawsuits that are subject to the medical review panel process at the time of the appellate court order.

The Kentucky Supreme Court unanimously struck down the 2017 tort reform law that required all medical professional liability claims first filter through a medical review panel to determine merit prior to entering the court system. The 34-page opinion states that the law is unconstitutional in its entirety and delays access to the courts for common-law claims. In holding the Medical Review Panel Act unconstitutional, the Kentucky Supreme Court focused its analysis on Section 14 of the commonwealth’s constitution. Referred to as the “right of judicial remedy for injury; speedy trial,” Section 14 asserts that “All courts shall be open, and every person for an injury done him in his lands, goods, person or reputation, shall have remedy by due course of law, and right and justice administered without sale, denial or delay.”

Does Kentucky have...

  • Damage Caps? No, damage caps were ruled unconstitutional in Kentucky in 1977.
  • Patient Compensation Fund? No
  • Apology Law? No
  • Collateral Source Reform? No
  • Periodic Payments? Not mandated
  • Joint Liability Reform? Yes, defendants are only responsible for their proportionate share of damages.
  • Limits on Plaintiff Attorney’s Fees? No

Medical Malpractice Rates in Kentucky


Rates in Kentucky tend to be fairly moderate, despite the lack of tort reform. Specialists like obstetricians and surgeons can find policies with premiums for under $70,000 per year. General practitioner policies can be found for about $15,000 per year or even less, depending on location.

Get Historic Rates

By combining our efforts with those of the Medical Liability Monitor – the nation’s leading independent source of Medical Liability Insurance news, as well as the political, legal and risk management issues that affect the healthcare industry – we’ve published historic rate data for every county in the Bluegrass State. You can view all the rates by completing the three simple steps on the left of this page. You’ll find the insights offered by this information invaluable when making your decision on your medical malpractice insurance coverage and carriers. This is only one of the many reasons that Cunningham Group Insurance has become the preferred online source for Kentucky physicians, healthcare professionals and medical groups looking to find the best coverage and lower their medical malpractice insurance rates.

Coverage by Kentucky County

Rates in Kentucky vary somewhat by county. Physicians might be subject to moderately higher rates in Jefferson County, which includes the city of Louisville, and in Fayette County, which includes Lexington. Rate may also be slightly higher in Boone, Campbell and Kenton Counties in northern Kentucky, and in Clay County and Leslie County in the southeast part of the state.

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