Legal Reform

A growing economy brings much-needed jobs and wage growth, but it also provides opportunity for entrepreneurial trial lawyers to exploit flaws in America’s lawsuit system for their own gain. 

The U.S. Chamber and its Institute for Legal Reform believe that the key to correcting those flaws and paving the way to a freer, fairer economy lies in repairing our broken class action lawsuit system, eliminating the fraud that permeates asbestos litigation, and curbing the rising trend of over-enforcement—particularly from certain state attorneys general, who are too often engaging in inconsistent, duplicative, and politically motivated enforcement actions.

Projects and Programs

 

Priorities for 2018

  • Continue to implement a comprehensive campaign on the issue of over-enforcement, with a focus on raising awareness around over-reaching, duplicative, and costly enforcement actions from state attorneys general (AGs), as well as at the federal level.
  • Advocate for reforms to practices by state attorneys general, including procedures limiting the retention of outside contingency fee counsel and ensuring that lawsuits as well as any settlement funds, fines, and penalties are directed toward actual consumer relief, rather than pure shakedowns designed to fund specific AG projects or AG office budgets.
  • Curb asbestos litigation abuses by continuing to expose fraud and abuse by the plaintiffs’ bar, and work to reform and limit abuses associated with Section 524(g) asbestos bankruptcy trusts.
  • Work to pass in the Senate:
    • The Fairness in Class Action Litigation Act (FICALA); and
    • The Furthering Asbestos Claim Transparency (FACT) Act
  • Prevent or limit efforts to expand liability under the federal False Claims Act.
  • Fight to preserve the availability of arbitration and other alternative dispute resolution mechanisms.
  • Strive to enact legal reforms at the state level, particularly in West Virginia, Missouri, Kentucky, and Wisconsin.
  • Engage with the EU and member countries to curb the export of U.S.-style class action litigation.

Recent Activity

ArticleNov 12, 2018 - 12:58pm

Trial Lawyers Brew Up Another Ridiculous Lawsuit

A ridiculous lawsuit is brewing in the Aloha State. Kona Hawaiian-style beer is headquartered in Hawaii, but brews its beer in other locations across the continental US. Now they are being sued for misleading consumers who claim they paid more for Kona’s beer because they thought it was made in Hawaii.

ArticleNov 11, 2018 - 1:29pm

Lawsuit Over Dried Fruit?

Hungry? Consumers are suing the maker of Kind snack bars for not containing enough fresh fruit. Their lawyers claim Kind bars “misled” consumers by dehydrating their fruit and putting “chemical-sounding terms like ascorbic acid” in their bars. And now they want a payout. Wait.

ArticleNov 02, 2018 - 7:16pm

Trial Lawyers Are Ruining Louisiana’s Way of Life

Fishing and other types of recreational sports are an important part of Louisiana’s culture. But the “Sportsman’s Paradise” is turning into a litigation nightmare. Trial lawyers are clogging up the court system with an endless stream of lawsuits.

ArticleOct 29, 2018 - 5:39pm

Ridiculous Soda Lawsuit Leaves a Bad Taste

Take a big gulp because another example of lawsuit abuse is bubbling to the surface. A woman is suing Canada Dry Ginger Ale for not containing ginger. But Canada Dry lists the ingredients on every can. The woman claims the company’s ads made her believe that Canada Dry was a healthier option over other soda.

ArticleOct 29, 2018 - 5:35pm

Trial Lawyers Want $5 Million Over Unwanted Cheese

Trial lawyers are cooking up an extra cheesy lawsuit in Florida. Two South Floridians don’t want cheese on their Quarter Pounders, and they think they should pay less for their Quarter Pounder orders when they visit McDonald’s restaurants.

Above the FoldOct 29, 2018 - 9:00am
"Legal reform" among lottery balls.

Plaintiffs’ Lawyers Hit the Jackpot

The U.S. tort system racked up $429 billion in total costs and compensation associated with lawsuits in 2016.

EventOct 24, 2018 - 9:00am to 3:00pm
2018 ILR Summit Branding

2018 Legal Reform Summit

Hear from issue experts on What’s Trending including data privacy liability, the growth of collective redress in the EU, locality litigation, and trial lawyer advertising.

ArticleSep 18, 2018 - 3:32pm

Lawsuits Threaten Louisiana’s “Sportsman’s Paradise” Way of Life

Fishing and other types of recreational sports are an important part of Louisiana’s culture. But the “sportsman’s paradise” is turning into a litigation nightmare. Trial lawyers are clogging up the court system with dozens and dozens of coastal erosion lawsuits.

ArticleSep 14, 2018 - 12:53pm

Something Smells Rotten: Man Suing Starkist Tuna over a Logo

Something smells rotten in New York…and it’s another ridiculous lawsuit. A man is suing Starkist Tuna over the American Heart Association’s Heart Checkmark logo the company displays on its cans. The lawsuit claims the logo misleads customers into thinking Starkist Tuna is healthier than other brands.

ArticleJun 25, 2018 - 1:30pm

This Case Bites: Man files lawsuit after fire ants bite him

It’s the case that’s been called “the poster child for everything that’s wrong with America’s lawsuit system” and a case that legal experts agree should have been thrown out of court.