RE: Publicizing His Annual Salary
January 14, 2003
Dr. Richard Anderson
Chairman, The Doctors Company
185 Greenwood Rd.
Napa, CA 94558
Via facsimile & US Mail
Dear Dr. Anderson:
You should make your annual salary public.
As Chairman of one of the nation’s largest medical malpractice insurers and an industry spokesperson, you have traversed the nation seeking to limit the legal recovery of innocent victims of medical negligence, no matter how egregious the negligence or serious the injury. While you seek to impose federally an arbitrary $250,000 cap on the amount of compensation a jury can award for an injured patient’s pain and suffering, you have failed to disclose how much you personally benefit from such legal limits already in place in California. The Napa Valley-based Doctors Company refuses to disclose your compensation in public filings at the California Department of Insurance and your salary appears to be a closely-guarded secret within the company as well.
Though you advocate restricting the compensation that innocent victims can receive for a lifetime of suffering to an arbitrary amount, regardless of the judgment of juries, you refuse to even reveal how much money you collect every year without any pain and suffering.
The Securities Exchange Commission reports on compensation for CEOs at publicly traded companies. For example, Jay Fishman, CEO of medical malpractice insurer St. Paul Co, made $9.7 million in 2001. Such profiteering is inappropriate to an industry that seeks to take the right of juries to compensate victims as they see fit.
You should set the record straight. As a public figure, and as the chairman of a regulated company that is, in California, required to justify its rates, your salary should be made public. Doctors who pay premiums, victims who will be limited in their recovery and lawmakers who will be asked to trust your testimony must know your personal stake in limiting victims’ legal rights.