Why do we need civil justice reform?
- In 2013, Louisiana was named the #2 "Judicial Hellhole" in the nation by the American Tort Reform Foundation. The report can be read here. It cites recent criticisms of the state's attorney general, the state Supreme Court's reversal of legacy lawsuit reform, recent coastal zone lawsuits, ongoing BP litigation and other factors as reason for Louisiana's inclusion on the list.
- In 2011, the American Tort Reform Association placed Louisiana on its annual "Judicial Hellholes" watchlist because of the conduct of some judges who do not apply the law evenly to all litigatnts and do not conduct trials in a fair and balanced manner.
- In 2010, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Institute for Legal Reform ranked Louisiana's court system as one of the least fair and reasonable in the United States.
- In 2008, Public Opinion Strategies found that 89 percent of Louisiana's small business owners think frivolous lawsuits hamper the state's business climate.
The U.S. Chamber's Institute for Legal Reform's 2012 Legal Climate Report ranks the states' tort liability systems. For the third year in a row, Louisiana ranks 49th among all 50 states in the fairness of its litigation environment. The entire report can be read here.
In its rating of key elements of tort liability systems, the Institute for Legal Reform ranked Louisiana:
According to the Chamber's press release, "The significance of a state's legal climate on business expansion decisions has steadily increased over the last five years. Seven out of ten survey respondents say a state's lawsuit environment is likely to impact important business decisions at their company, such as where to locate or expand their businesses, a 13 percent increase from survey results just five years ago."
- 47th in having and enforcing meaningful venue requirements
- 49th in overall treatment of tort and contract litigation
- 49th in treatment of class action suits
- 48th in damages
- 50th in timeliness of summary judgment or dismissal
- 46th in scientific and technical evidence
- 49th in judges' impartiality
- 48th in judges' competence
- 48th in juries' fairness
Louisiana small business owner, Mike Carter, knows first-hand the negative impact frivilous lawsuits have on business operations. He is facing more than 100 asbestos lawsuits from 2,000 plaintiffs and he does not even manufacturer asbestos. Click here to read his story.