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Legal Reform

Every American who has been legitimately wronged deserves his or her day in court. The U.S. Chamber and its Institute for Legal Reform are working every day to make our legal system faster, simpler, and fairer. We are fighting those who abuse the system for their own personal gain, clog the courts with meritless lawsuits, and undermine our right to due process.

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Give us a break. (And break us off a piece of that KitKat bar, while you’re at it.) https://t.co/KdIgtYWu9N

07/01/2016

Medical device CEO appalled by prosecutorial misconduct in federal case against him @TheJusticeDept https://t.co/4VlWZqsJtS

07/01/2016

False Claims Act Penalties to Double https://t.co/CBcLwtzKRk

07/01/2016

Our Position

A Dubious Honor

The United States is the world leader in lawsuits, which cost the U.S. economy $264 billion per year— or about $850 per year for every man, woman, and child in the United States.

America has the costliest legal system in the world. Lawsuits cost the U.S. economy $264 billion per year, or about $850 per year for every man, woman, and child in the United States. The ultimate victims of lawsuit abuse are consumers and workers who suffer from higher prices and lost jobs and benefits.
 
Businesses also suffer—not only from the costs of fighting sometimes frivolous lawsuits, but also when government agencies deny their rights to due process. America’s enforcement system has turned into a shakedown operation where regulators find a company that may or may not have done something wrong; threaten its managers with commercial ruin; and force them to pay an enormous fine to drop the charges in a secret settlement where nobody can check the details.
 
To ensure all Americans—workers and employers—get the justice they deserve, we need to reform our legal and enforcement systems. Our legal reform agenda includes the following:

  • Reforming legal systems in key problem states and jurisdictions
  • Raising public awareness of the impact of lawsuit abuse on our economy, our citizens, and our global competitiveness.
  • Preserving the availability of arbitration and other alternative dispute resolution mechanisms that would reduce the number of lawsuits and their costs while ensuring justice is served.
  • Reforming the medical tort system to make costs more affordable and predictable.
  • Supporting class action reform and opposing efforts to weaken the Class Action Fairness Act.
  • Educating the public on important state judicial and attorney general races.

 

Hurting Small Businesses

Litigation costs small businesses in America over $100 billion per year.

When it comes to our enforcement system, it must:

  • Be rules based and transparent.
  • Eliminate incentives for officials, regulators, and plaintiff’s lawyers to press settlements that work to their personal and political advantage.
  • Ensure that enforcement is fair, clear, and respects due process.

 

Take Action

Legal reform is a key component of the U.S. Chamber's Jobs, Growth, and Opportunity Agenda - an ambitious plan to generate stronger, more robust economic growth, create jobs and expand opportunity for all Americans. 

Timeline

The latest updates across all U.S. Chamber properties

E.g., 07/01/2016
E.g., 07/01/2016
Article

class="p1">Howard Root is the CEO of Minneapolis-based medical device maker Vascular Solutions. Among the company’s products is one called the Varilase short kit, a device approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat varicose veins.

1 week 1 day ago
Article

As a BP engineer, Kurt Mix played a key role killing the Macondo Well during the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

He and a team of seasoned engineers worked tirelessly for nearly 90 days with little sleep and no time off.

1 month 6 days ago
Article

As a BP engineer, Kurt Mix played a key role killing the Macondo Well during the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

He and a team of seasoned engineers worked tirelessly for nearly 90 days with little sleep and no time off.

1 month 6 days ago
Event

This Symposium will address the rise of overcriminalization, the inappropriate criminalization of what are truly civil, regulatory or administrative problems, and the pressures associated with enforcement against businesses and corporate individuals.

1 month 6 days ago
Article

A Texas lawyer was so disappointed when a local restaurant ran out of soup that he href="http://www.usatoday.com/videos/news/2016/04/27/83590110/">threatened to sue.

(We’ll give you a moment to make your own Seinfeld “Soup Nazi” joke.)

1 month 1 week ago
Article

What’s one sip of beer worth to you?  Well, one sip almost cost a North Yorkshire, UK, bar owner £5,000 and her professional reputation.

Michelle Craggs and her husband Neville took over the Fleece Inn about three years ago.  Last July, officials from the government’s trading standards department visited the pub for an inspection.

1 month 1 week ago
Article

A Parisian man who claims his job made him suffer from crushing boredom is now href="http://money.cnn.com/2016/05/03/news/boring-job-lawsuit/index.html">sticking that company with a big, not-boring lawsuit.

1 month 1 week ago
Letter

This coalition letter was sent to the members of the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee commending them for holding a hearing tomorrow on the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and abusive class action litigation.

1 month 2 weeks ago