The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is at it once again; spamming the Internet with misleading and biased information. The “2012 State Liability Systems Ranking Study,” was conducted to determine how large corporations perceive our legal system. In-house attorneys and senior executives at companies with at least $100 million in annual revenues were asked what they thought of being sued. Is there any doubt in your mind what their responses were?
The Copley News Service has discredited this study for years; “there’s no hard data that can be used to measure perceived fairness of a state's legal system,” yet the Chamber continues to show a callous disregard for the truth. Their “frivolous” lawsuit excuse for tort reform is, simply, a lie.
I am not surprised that the Chamber of Commerce would knowingly conduct such a frivolous survey, nor am I surprised at the results from large, profit-driven, corporations. The name of the game is an almost relentless pursuit of P-R-O-F-I-T-S, regardless of who gets hurt in the pursuit. Furthermore, it is no surprise that the study is misrepresented; these attorneys are paid to protect large corporations from being held accountable for the damage they cause. This so-called study is just another ploy to dupe healthy citizens into giving up the constitutional rights of injured or disabled citizens, not believing in the possibility that each of us may become an injured or disabled citizen in an instant of corporate neglect. It is another tactic to grant immunity to negligent corporations. If the Chamber wanted the truth, the survey would not have been limited to attorneys representing $100 million companies.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, big business and insurance companies spend millions of dollars to convince us that the system is broken, that “lawsuit abuse” is hurting corporate America. Tort reform has never been about fixing a “broken” justice system; it has always been about protecting corporations and insurance companies from paying full and fair compensation. It has never been about keeping “greedy lawyers” from filing frivolous lawsuits; in fact, this effort is not about “frivolous” lawsuits at all. It is about serious injuries, serious consequences, serious lawsuits. it has always been about keeping those who are severely injured out of the court system and away from the public eye.
Corporate defense attorneys are paid to assist corporations from being held responsible for the harm they cause to citizens. If they cannot do that, their charge is to minimize that responsibility. These corporations are interested in bottom line profit; they care little or not at all about the innocent victims that were injured or killed due to negligent or intentional corporate behavior. Make a dangerous pill? Seek immunity from being sued by the people you harmed. Make a dangerous gasoline can, which danger can be fixed for less than a dollar? Shut down your plant, leave town, leave a community of unemployment and blame the victims and their lawyers for your company's demise. Then, make plans to manufacturer the same dangerous gas cans in a foreign country, without safety oversight, so that you can continue to sell the same dangerous can in the U.S.. Why does the U.S. Chamber of Commerce believe that large corporations deserve a free pass when they are negligent? Why do “tort reformers” seek to deny innocent victims of their rights and inundate the media with their false propaganda?
Chamber: Why not stop the reasons for being sued? Why not use your marketing might to force members to make safer products? Foster safer operating rooms? Why limit awards in serious lawsuits filed by seriously injured innocent victims of wrongdoing while insulting the victims, telling the world that their devastating circumstances are “frivolous”? You have the money to engage in billion dollar marketing efforts; you have demonstrated that; why not pour your billions into fixing the problems and improving safety rather than into disseminating fraudulent and phony misinformation about the civil justice system and tort reform. Help reduce lawsuits by using your power and money to improve safety rather than shamelessly trying to reduce compensation to victims.
America: Our civil freedoms are being hi-jacked. But, we are powerful; we are citizens. We have the collective power to prevent this charade. Stand up for the rights of all citizens, able or disabled, healthy or infirm. Tell the US Chamber of Commerce, corporations, insurance companies, and other tort reform advocates to stop lying to the American people. Shielding corporations and government entities from liability or damages is not the solution. Every concerned American should contact their local and state representatives to stop these heinous acts. Defend your rights; after all, you are only one incident away from being, first, a victim of corporate negligence and, second, a victim of senseless tort reform, politics and corporate greed.
Attorney, certified civil mediator, and award-winning author of the Zachary Blake Betrayal Series—Mark Bello is also the CEO of Lawsuit Financial and the country’s leading expert in providing non-recourse lawsuit funding to plaintiffs involved in pending litigation. He is also a member of the State Bar of Michigan, a sustaining member of the Michigan Association for Justice, and a member of the American Association for Justice.