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September 23rd, 2011

‘Sue’ York City’s Corporation Counsel Calls for Tort Reform

In a cry for help that will almost certainly be ignored by Albany lawmakers who are wholly owned by the plaintiffs’ bar, New York City corporation counsel Michael Cardozo yesterday called for tort reform, characterizing the “huge” dollar amount his city paid out in tort lawsuits this fiscal year as “an unacceptable tradeoff in favor of individual plaintiffs at the expense of providing services to New Yorkers.” 

In a speech to a nonprofit group focused on city and state finances, Cardozo said that the city paid out $561 million in tort and related cases in the 2011 fiscal year, compared to $21.4 million in 1978, according to Thomson Reuters.

By capping pain-and-suffering damages at $250,000, changing the state’s antiquated and anti-competitive joint-and-several liability rule, and undertaking additional reforms, Cardozo said the city would save $100 million a year.

“The tort laws must be changed to even the playing field,” he said.  But as Judicial Hellholes readers know, the playing field is not likely to be made even as long as personal injury lawyer and lawsuit investor Sheldon Silver serves as Assembly Speaker in the state legislature.

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