Judicial Advocacy

Litigation Center case selection criteria


Litigation can be an expensive undertaking, and competition for case funding is intense. Litigation Center funding is derived solely from membership dues. Consequently, the Executive Committee carefully reviews each request and determines whether the proposed case is consistent with the mission and objectives of the Litigation Center and with the policies of the American Medical Association.

Download the AMA Litigation Center and States Medical Societies Rules of Engagement (PDF)

Featured cases

Find information about some of the cases the Litigation Center is working on, including cases dealing with tort reform, scope of practice and Medicare.

Litigation Center cases must satisfy both of the following criteria:

  • The Litigation Center position must be consistent with AMA policies
  • The medical society of the state in which a case is to be filed must support Litigation Center involvement

Litigation Center support may take the form of funding, in‑kind services, or both. It is impossible to create a definitive list of criteria for determining whether the Executive Committee will accept a case. The parties, merits and case posture are all relevant. In addition, the following selection factors will be reviewed, as applicable:

  • Whether the legal issues presented extend or clarify the case law on a matter of interest to physicians generally
  • The precedential value of the case (i.e., level of court, jurisdiction and nature of legal proceeding)
  • The scope of applicability of the case determination (i.e., state, regional, national or specialty-specific matter)
  • The type and level of assistance being requested of the Litigation Center
  • The likely chances of succeeding on the merits
  • The allocation of Litigation Center resources required by the proposed case
  • The contribution made by others, including the parties and the person who has requested support
  • The comparative value of selecting a particular case as against other pending and likely litigation requests
  • The extent of non-financial costs (e.g., whether litigation makes political and other options less feasible)
  • The state medical society and AMA membership status of any individual physicians that the Litigation Center is requested to support (or oppose)
  • Whether options other than litigation are available

All cases selected for Litigation Center support are reviewed continuously until concluded. The Executive Committee has absolute discretion to determine whether to continue funding cases.

For more information on how to partner with the Litigation Center on a case, contact Leonard Nelson at [email protected].