Chamber Says WV Legal Reform Proposal Ineffective | U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Chamber Says WV Legal Reform Proposal Ineffective

Thursday, February 24, 2005 - 7:00pm

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform today expressed disappointment with the narrow scope of the legal reform bill proposed by West Virginia

Governor Joe Manchin.

"This piece of legislation doesn't do enough to improve West Virginia's abusive legal system," said Lisa Rickard, president of the Institute for Legal Reform.

While the Chamber is pleased that Governor Manchin's proposal does eliminate third-party bad faith lawsuits, it remains concerned by the absence of other key provisions. To effectively improve West Virginia's legal climate, a comprehensive legal reform bill must include the following measures: significant joint and several liability reform; reform of the collateral source rule; asbestos reform; medical monitoring reforms; and limitations on unreasonable punitive and non-economic damages – none of which are included in the Governor's bill.

"Until meaningful legal reforms are passed, West Virginia will remain closed for business," continued Rickard. "A comprehensive bill is needed to bring jobs and economic growth to the state."

The mission of the Institute for Legal Reform is to make America's legal system simpler, fairer and faster for everyone. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world's largest business federation, representing more than three million businesses and organizations of every size, sector and region.

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