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April 23, 2013

Land of Lincoln or Land of Lawsuits?

A new report in City Journal discusses the fiscal challenges facing the “City That Works” — Chicago.

From the city’s history of high-profile corruption cases to its current economic challenges to a series of poor rankings on economic indicator studies, author Aaron M. Renn delves into a number of reasons why he feels the “Second City” has become a “Second-Rate City.”

Of interest to our readers is the fact that Renn also highlights the Chicago area’s reputation as a haven for lawsuit abuse:

Companies also fear Cook County’s litigation environment, which the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has called the most unfair and unreasonable in the country.  

He is, of course, referring to ILR’s Lawsuit Climate report, in which Cook County’s lawsuit climate ranks as the worst in the country.  This is a big reason why the entire state of Illinois is also ranked among the country’s worst, with the fifth-worst lawsuit climate in America.

This report comes at the same time that Texas Governor Rick Perry has launched an ad campaign in Illinois, seeking to lure Land of Lincoln businesses to the Lone Star State. Perry is leveraging his state’s 2003 tort reforms as one of the reasons his state is more business-friendly than Illinois.

We hope this continued spotlight on Illinois’ abusive legal climate is a wake-up call to Illinois’ elected officials and spurs them to take efforts in coming years to enact common sense reforms to the state’s civil justice system.

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