The Iowa legislature has revised the”PEXA” rule established in Pexa v. Auto Owners Insurance Co., 686 N.W.2d 150 (Iowa 2004). The Pexa case provided that a jury, in personal injury cases, could consider both the charged amount and the actual amount of past medical bills paid when determining how much to award for past medical expenses.
Senate File 2338, passed on June 10, 2020, and signed into law by Governor Kim Reynolds on June 18, 2020, amends Iowa’s rules of evidence to limit the admissibility of evidence to prove past medical expenses to amounts actually paid to satisfy the bills that have been satisfied, and evidence of the amounts actually necessary to satisfy the bills that have been incurred but not yet satisfied. In addition, the bill amends Iowa’s comparative fault statute to limit a plaintiff’s recovery for medical care rendered to the sum of the amounts actually paid by or on behalf of the injured person to the health care providers who rendered treatment and any amounts actually necessary to satisfy the medical care charges that have been incurred but not yet satisfied. This provision specifically excepts medical malpractice suits governed by Iowa Code section 147.136.