Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Judicial Hellholes

Well, the American Tort Reform Foundation provides the answer in its latest “Judicial Hellholes” report just released on December 16.In the press release, ATRF president Tiger Joyce declared: “"Lawsuit abuse continues to have a negative impact on the nation's economy, as well as particular state economies. Every dollar spent defending against a speculative lawsuit is a dollar that won't be spent on research and development, capital investment, worker training or job creation. Unfortunately for those living in Hellholes jurisdictions during this economic downturn, it can be that much harder to find or keep a job and get critical health care services as employers and doctors are driven away by the threat of costly litigation."

What’s the worst judicial hellhole in the nation?According to ATRF, it’s West Virginia:

The Mountain State reclaims the #1 Judicial Hellhole ranking this year for its near perfect storm of anti-business rulings, massive lawsuits and cozy relationships between the personal injury bar, the state attorney general and some in the judiciary. The state's highest court has a history of plaintiff-friendly decisions, paying damages to those who are not injured, allowing mass trials, permitting lawsuits outside the workers' compensation system, rejecting long-established legal principles, and welcoming plaintiffs' lawyers from other states to take advantage of its generous rulings. To make matters worse, West Virginia is one of only two states that do not guarantee a right to appeal a civil verdict.

Check out the full report.
Raymond J. Keating
Chief EconomistSmall Business & Entrepreneurship Council

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