Travis Akin Feb. 25, 2013, 7:00am
The legislative session is heating up and there are several lawsuit reform initiatives awaiting action in committees in both the House and the Senate. The fate of this legislation remains unknown but if history is any indication, the prospects of these common-sense lawsuit reforms is doubtful at best.
Illinois Lawsuit Abuse Watch will continue to push for legislation such as HB 138 which would create some common-sense guidelines on where a civil lawsuit can be filed and other reform initiatives. The fight must go on even if the leadership in the House and the Senate continues to prevent these reforms from moving forward.
Illinois may or may not get meaningful lawsuit reforms enacted into law this spring, but one thing Illinois absolutely needs to avoid is legislation that will make Illinois’ legal climate even worse than it already is.
In recent months, the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association has taken a much more aggressive approach to advancing their agenda. Paving the way for more lawsuits may be a good stimulus plan for personal injury lawyers but it is voodoo economics for the rest of us. What Illinois needs is jobs – not more lawsuits.
Illinois is the nation’s fifth-worst state for legal fairness, according to a report from Harris Interactive. Additionally, Illinois is home to Madison County, which is ranked the nation’s third-worst “Judicial Hellhole” and Cook County which was named to the watch list on the annul “Judicial Hellholes” report.
Surrounding states such as Wisconsin and Iowa have already enacted meaningful lawsuit reforms and new Indiana Governor Mike Pence has indicated that lawsuit reform will be one of his main priorities. While surrounding states are making lawsuit reform a priority, the last thing Illinois needs is for the Legislature to take steps backward by enacting legislation that would make Illinois’ legal climate even worse.
Currently, Illinois has the worst credit rating of all 50 states and only six states have a worse unemployment rate than Illinois. Adding to the lawsuit abuse problem in Illinois will only make our economy worse and send more jobs and opportunities to other states.
Illinois can ill afford to take steps backward when it comes to the state’s lawsuit climate. Illinois Lawsuit Abuse Watch will continue to fight for common-sense lawsuit reform and sound the alarm when dangerous legislation begins making its way through the legislative process.
Keep up with the latest news by following Illinois Lawsuit Abuse Watch on Twitter and Facebook, which can be accessed by logging onto www.illawsuitabusewatch.org. Join the fight for reform and let’s create jobs – not more lawsuits in Illinois.