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September 12, 2013

House Committee Passes Bill to Sanction Frivolous Lawsuits

On Wednesday, the House Judiciary Committee passed the Lawsuit Abuse Reduction Act of 2013, a bill that would make sanctions against frivolous lawsuits mandatory rather than discretionary and would eliminate a 21-day “safe harbor” for plaintiffs’ lawyers to avoid sanctions by withdrawing a suit without penalty.

“In the years since Congress watered down federal laws intended to prevent frivolous lawsuits in 1993, such claims have led to increased insurance costs, job losses, and an almost total failure of attorney accountability. The result over time has been potentially hundreds of millions of dollars of unnecessary costs to small businesses and our nation’s economy,” ILR president Lisa Rickard says in a statement.

“This legislation would increase the risk involved in making a frivolous claim because a claimant would be prevented from withdrawing the claim without consequence. This would result in fewer phony lawsuits and reduce wasteful litigation.”

The bill now moves to the House floor, reports BLT: The Blog of Legal Times.

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