A statewide legal watchdog group will launch a television ad campaign that parodies lawyer solicitation commercials to raise awareness about the impact of junk lawsuits in Illinois courts.
Illinois Lawsuit Abuse Watch (I-LAW) will air 30-second TV spots that "urge" people to file junk lawsuits in media markets across the state beginning this week.
"While many lawsuits are on the up and up, the cost of fighting junk lawsuits is passed on to citizens in the form of higher prices for virtually everything such as groceries, doctor visits and medications," David Loveday, executive director of I-LAW, said in a press release.
Loveday cited a recent study which found that every person in Illinois pays a hidden "lawsuit tax" of $866 a year.
"The average family of four pays four times that amount -- more than $3,600 a year," he said.
According to Loveday, the ad opens with a game show host asking, "Do you feel like someone is playing a game with your healthcare? Wonder why?" A contestant shouts, "Come on, let's file junk lawsuits. Big money! Big money!
The commercials point out that junk lawsuit ads are also designed to scare doctors and patients. "I can't lose," says the contestant, "but you can."
Loveday said junk lawsuits clog courts and drive up the cost of products and services.
"We must rein in junk lawsuits to help restore the balance, fairness and common sense to our civil justice system," Loveday said.