WASHINGTON, D.C.— Lisa A. Rickard, president of the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform (ILR), issued the following statement today applauding the U.S. House of Representatives for passing the “Lawsuit Abuse Reduction Act of 2013” (H.R. 2655). The legislation seeks to reduce wasteful litigation by making sanctions against frivolous claims mandatory rather than discretionary under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, and by eliminating a 21-day “safe harbor” period for a plaintiff’s lawyer to withdraw a lawsuit without penalty.
“A generation ago, the rule meant to hold lawyers accountable for bringing frivolous lawsuits was watered down. What followed was a litigation wave that left in its wake increased insurance costs, job losses, and a near total breakdown of attorney accountability.
“Now, with the Lawsuit Abuse Reduction Act (LARA), Congress has a chance to get it right by putting real teeth back into the law and penalizing those who file frivolous claims. Passing LARA will result in fewer phony lawsuits and less wasteful litigation. And every American would benefit from a less litigious society.
“We commend the House for passing this vital legislation and urge the Senate to swiftly pass it as well.”
ILR seeks to promote civil justice reform through legislative, political, judicial, and educational activities at the national, state, and local levels.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations.