Controls on personal injury lawsuits have been proposed in the State Senate. State senator Delbert Scott of Lowry City says his concern is fueled by malpractice lawsuits filed against doctors and hospitals, the unreasonably high damage awards when some suits succeed, and the big increases in malpractice insurance rates that have hit the medical profession. Scott says the aggressive nature of damage lawsuits has driven up insurance costs in many fields. He calls some punitive damage awards “abusive.” This is not an unfamiliar issue. It has been discussed for years – traditionally opposed by trial lawyers. Critics of what is known as tort reform say malpractice insurance costs are going up because insurance companies have lost money in the stock market so they jack up their policy rates.