Improve the health of the people of Wisconsin by supporting and strengthening physicians' ability to practice high-quality patient care in a changing environment.

In The Courtroom

Just as the Society makes physicians’ voices heard at the Capitol, it also advances the view of physicians in the courtroom.

Perhaps most memorably, when the state of Wisconsin took $200 million from the Injured Patients and Families Compensation Fund to balance the budget, the Society fought back. We filed a lawsuit on behalf of physicians and their patients to restore to the Fund the money taken plus interest—and won. The Wisconsin Supreme Court ordered that the money taken plus interest be paid back, and also issued a permanent injunction preventing the State from transferring money out of the Fund in the future.

But that’s just one example. Our efforts in the courtroom on behalf of physicians and patients are ongoing.

Because the precedents set by appellate courts can affect the health law landscape as much as laws created in the Capitol, it is important that judges understand the impact of those decisions. By filing amicus briefs—also known  as “friend of the court” briefs—in cases that have the potential to broadly affect Wisconsin physicians from a legal and/or public policy perspective, the Society is able to present legal and public policy arguments to judges that may not have been made by the parties themselves.

Legal Advocacy in 2015

This year, the Society has filed an amicus brief in four such cases:

  • Seifert v. Balink
  • Bayer v. Dobbins
  • Mayo v. Wisconsin Injured Patients and Families Compensation Fund
  • Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, Inc. et al. v. Schmiel, et. al.

Click here for an overview of these cases.
The Society filed amicus briefs in four cases in 2013-2014 as well:

  • David Buchanan, MD v. Circuit Court of Outagamie County, Branch 1
  • Fiez V. Keevil
  • United States of America, ex rel Watson V. King Vassel
  • Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, Inc. et al. v. Van Hollen, et. al.

An overview of these cases is here.