As we move into the long days of summer, many states are finishing their 2015 legislative sessions – and some states have made significant progress in cleaning up their legal systems and reining in lawsuit abuse.
In West Virginia, the Legislature worked together with Governor Ray Tomblin to pass numerous reforms to help the state create jobs, such as asbestos trust transparency and punitive damage caps. Illinois, similarly, appears to be on the right path, with Governor Rauner making tort reform a signature part of his legislative priorities. In Nevada, Gov. Brian Sandoval signed the Homeowner Protections Act to discourage lawsuit abuse and help the state’s housing market grow. And in California, progress continues to be made in addressing the state’s problem with lawsuit abuse associated with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Unfortunately, not all elected officials made legal reform a signature issue in 2015. Florida’s legislative session disappointingly ended with multiple legal reform bills idle in committee. These reforms bills would have significantly improved Florida’s litigation climate and made the state a more attractive location for small business development and investment.
The end of legislative sessions, however, does not close the book on grassroots activities to promote legal reform and prevent lawsuit abuse. There are still a variety of ways for everyday citizens across the country to get involved in their communities and make a positive difference, from writing to your representatives in Congress about the need for legal reform at the federal level to interacting with Sick of Lawsuits on Facebook or Twitter.
At the end of the day, fighting lawsuit abuse begins and ends with people at the grassroots level pushing for change and calling out instances of abuse when they see it. Sick of Lawsuits encourages individuals to get involved on social media to promote legal reform, empower others to be knowledgeable legal consumers, and act as watchdogs to call out abuse in their communities.
Additionally, not all legislative sessions have closed for the year and it is important to stay engaged and push your elected officials to support needed legal reform legislation in states across the country. There is never a bad time to get involved, and the fight to improve our legal system and eliminate lawsuit abuse never ends.