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June 12th, 2015

ATRA Calls Albany’s ‘Bad Faith’ Bill ‘Another Tone-Deaf Gift to Trial Lawyers’

With former Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver facing federal corruption charges in connection with questionable asbestos litigation, the American Tort Reform Association today urged Albany lawmakers to “promptly kill an insurance litigation bill that would open yet another lucrative line of business for personal injury lawyers at the expense of New York consumers and jobseekers.” . . . → Read More: ATRA Calls Albany’s ‘Bad Faith’ Bill ‘Another Tone-Deaf Gift to Trial Lawyers’

May 19th, 2015

‘Insane’ $82 Million Verdict Suggests Missouri Trial Courts Take Cues from ‘Hellhole’ of a High Court

Apparently taking cues from the Supreme Court of Missouri, currently the sixth-ranked Judicial Hellhole, a Jackson County court this month rendered what is perhaps the most absurd plaintiff’s verdict thus far in 2015 . . . → Read More: ‘Insane’ $82 Million Verdict Suggests Missouri Trial Courts Take Cues from ‘Hellhole’ of a High Court

May 19th, 2015

Indiana High Court Makes Uncharacteristic Bid for Dishonorable Mention in Next ‘Hellholes’ Report

The formerly well-regarded Indiana Supreme Court this month opted to expand significantly the “vicarious” liability of employers when employees disobey in-house policies or relevant law in pursuit of their personal interests that do not further their employers’ interests . . . → Read More: Indiana High Court Makes Uncharacteristic Bid for Dishonorable Mention in Next ‘Hellholes’ Report

May 5th, 2015

More Bad News from ‘Big Sky Country’

Continuing a troubling trend toward increasingly excessive punitive damages awards in Big Sky Country, Montana’s Supreme Court has upheld a $5 million punitive damages award in connection with an already absurdly inflated compensatory damages award of $1 million . . . → Read More: More Bad News from ‘Big Sky Country’

April 30th, 2015

Alabama Lawmakers Slap Down State’s High Court on ‘Innovator Liability’

Among many others, the Wall Street Journal today heralded Alabama lawmakers’ slap-down earlier this week of recent state supreme court decisions that embraced the both ridiculous and dangerous legal theory peddled by the plaintiffs’ bar as “innovator liability” . . . → Read More: Alabama Lawmakers Slap Down State’s High Court on ‘Innovator Liability’

April 14th, 2015

‘Litigation Imbalance’ Study Is More Bad News from Illinois, Lincoln Spinning in Grave

On the anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s assassination, a civil justice watchdog group in Illinois has released its latest “Litigation Imbalance” study, the findings of which surely have the 16th president and Great Emancipator spinning in his grave . . . → Read More: ‘Litigation Imbalance’ Study Is More Bad News from Illinois, Lincoln Spinning in Grave

March 19th, 2015

NYCAL Judge Heitler’s ‘March Madness’

In denying an asbestos defendant’s motion for summary judgment, notoriously plaintiff-friendly NYCAL Judge Sherry Klein Heitler succumbed to some March madness of her own, calling the motion a “drastic remedy” and relying on testimony from a witness in an unrelated case from Maryland 14 years earlier to do so. Talk about going out of your way to please the plaintiffs’ bar . . . → Read More: NYCAL Judge Heitler’s ‘March Madness’

March 11th, 2015

Louisiana’s Corrupting ‘Buddy System’ Seemingly Back in Business, Despite Recent Reform

ATRA’s allies at Louisiana Lawsuit Abuse Watch report that, “Despite fierce criticism from lawmakers and legal reform groups in recent years,” state Attorney General James “Buddy” Caldwell has revived his infamous “Buddy System,” continuing “his questionable practice of hiring outside attorneys to pursue litigation on behalf of the state” and giving much of this potentially lucrative business to “law firms and lawyers that have donated tens of thousands of dollars to his political campaign[s]” . . . → Read More: Louisiana’s Corrupting ‘Buddy System’ Seemingly Back in Business, Despite Recent Reform

February 23rd, 2015

Southern Illinois Federal Court Shines Brightly in Dismissing Defendants from Non-Illinois Asbestos Exposure Claim

On February 17th and 19th, Judge Staci M. Yandle for the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois granted seven motions to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction for defendants involved in a large multi-defendant asbestos case. In each claim, the plaintiff, a former Navy worker, fell far short of alleging sufficient contacts by the defendants to the state of Illinois to satisfy constitutional due process requirements. . . . → Read More: Southern Illinois Federal Court Shines Brightly in Dismissing Defendants from Non-Illinois Asbestos Exposure Claim

February 20th, 2015

Out-of-State Mass Tort Plaintiffs Again Flocking to Philadelphia, a Two-Time #1 Judicial Hellhole

As reported by the Pennsylvania Record, mass tort filings jumped 150 percent last year in Philadelphia’s Complex Litigation Center (CLC), America’s #1 Judicial Hellhole in 2010 and 2011 . . . → Read More: Out-of-State Mass Tort Plaintiffs Again Flocking to Philadelphia, a Two-Time #1 Judicial Hellhole

February 10th, 2015

Is Heat Brought by Former Speaker Silver’s Indictment Making NYCAL Judges Think Twice?

As discomfiting attention from federal prosecutors and the media rains down on asbestos judges comprising the nation’s #1 Judicial Hellhole, a runaway verdict to the tune of $190 million has now been dramatically reduced . . . → Read More: Is Heat Brought by Former Speaker Silver’s Indictment Making NYCAL Judges Think Twice?

January 22nd, 2015

ATRA Calls Corruption Arrest of NY Speaker Sheldon Silver a ‘Turning Point’

A spokesman for the American Tort Reform Association today called this morning’s arrest and filing of federal corruption charges against New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver a “turning point” in the effort to combat abuses in the nation’s #1 judicial hellhole . . . → Read More: ATRA Calls Corruption Arrest of NY Speaker Sheldon Silver a ‘Turning Point’

January 14th, 2015

Citing Latest Bombshell Allegations of Trial-Lawyer Fraud, ATRA Urges Congress, DOJ to Investigate

In light of a stunning defense motion filed today in a West Virginia federal court, alleging massive fraud on the part of plaintiffs’ lawyers in their aggressive recruitment of clients for pelvic mesh litigation, the American Tort Reform Association (ATRA) renewed its call on Congress, prosecutors and bar associations to investigate and prosecute those who defraud the civil justice system . . . → Read More: Citing Latest Bombshell Allegations of Trial-Lawyer Fraud, ATRA Urges Congress, DOJ to Investigate

January 12th, 2015

MadCo: Where 1,200 Out-of-State Lawsuits is a Dip

Madison County hosted 1,300 new asbestos lawsuit filings in 2014. Madison County’s docket has doubled in the last four years and tripled in the last seven. Nine of ten plaintiffs who file in Madison County don’t live in Illinois. And less than 1% live in Madison County. . . . → Read More: MadCo: Where 1,200 Out-of-State Lawsuits is a Dip

January 4th, 2015

Exposed But No Injury? Sue Now, Nevada.

In a New Year’s eve gift, the Nevada Supreme Court ruled that plaintiffs’ lawyers can bring lawsuits seeking medical monitoring costs on behalf of people who aren’t injured. The ruling, which is contrary to the trend in state courts, will allow individuals who may never develop an illness to bring massive class actions. Unlike courts that have allowed medical monitoring claims, but placed stringent requirements on plaintiffs to avoid speculative claims, the Nevada Supreme Court “decline[d] to identify specific factors that a plaintiff must demonstrate to establish entitlement to medical monitoring as a remedy.” . . . → Read More: Exposed But No Injury? Sue Now, Nevada.

December 16th, 2014

New York City’s Asbestos Court is #1 ‘Judicial Hellhole’

The American Tort Reform Foundation issued its annual Judicial Hellholes® report today, naming courts in New York City, California, West Virginia, Florida, Illinois, Missouri and Louisiana among the nation’s “most unfair” in their handling of civil litigation. . . . → Read More: New York City’s Asbestos Court is #1 ‘Judicial Hellhole’

October 31st, 2014

Ohio Jury Delivers a Thriller of a Verdict in Bogus Washing Machine Mold Class Action

On Thursday, October 30th, an Ohio jury delivered a “trick” of their own to frighteningly mischievous class action plaintiffs lawyers who have been running around scaring up unfounded complaints against the washing machine manufacturer, Whirlpool Corp. After a three week trial, the jury found in favor of Whirlpool – that the company’s front loading washing machines did not suffer from a design flaw, leading to mold accumulation. . . . → Read More: Ohio Jury Delivers a Thriller of a Verdict in Bogus Washing Machine Mold Class Action

September 10th, 2014

Latest ‘Show Me the Lawsuits’ Decision by Missouri High Court Ignores SCOTUS on Punitive Damages

In the latest of several troubling decisions by the Missouri Supreme Court in recent years, it yesterday ignored both the will of “Show Me State” voters, as expressed through their elected representatives, and U.S. Supreme Court precedent on punitive damages . . . → Read More: Latest ‘Show Me the Lawsuits’ Decision by Missouri High Court Ignores SCOTUS on Punitive Damages

September 3rd, 2014

BP Motion Seeks Removal of Administrator Juneau

Alleging that the attorney appointed to administer compensation claims for the 2010 Gulf oil spill has conflicts of interests, allowed corruption of the claims process, and has otherwise mismanaged the multibillion-dollar compensation fund it established, energy giant BP yesterday filed a motion in federal court seeking his removal . . . → Read More: BP Motion Seeks Removal of Administrator Juneau

August 18th, 2014

ATRA Disappointed Again by Alabama High Court’s Unprecedented ‘Innovator Liability’ Decision

As the Supreme Court of Alabama on Friday reaffirmed its earlier, first-and-only-in-the-nation state high court embrace of an expansive theory of civil liability known as “innovator liability,” the American Tort Reform Association (ATRA) condemned the 6-3 decision, saying “the court majority denies the broader and dangerous implications of this decision, but it’s as disappointing as the first” . . . → Read More: ATRA Disappointed Again by Alabama High Court’s Unprecedented ‘Innovator Liability’ Decision