‘Judicial Hellhole’ Report Spotlights Need for Legal Reform in Florida

Date: August 20, 2021

NFIB State Executive Director Bill Herrle says a new report calling South Florida an “Everlasting Judicial Hellhole” underscores the need for comprehensive legal reform in the state. 

“We know there are plenty of public policy challenges out there these days, but we are asking legislators to keep their eye on the ball,” Herrle said. “Tort reform is critically important.”

The American Tort Reform Foundation this week published its list of “Everlasting Judicial Hellholes,” jurisdictions where it says civil courts routinely apply laws and court procedures in a way that’s unfair to defendants. It cited recurring issues such as phantom damages and bad faith litigation.  

“Our members continue to work with their local legislators to stop predatory practices such as third-party litigation financing and jury awards that are based on inflated and even fictional medical costs,” Herrle said. “These are the issues that are hamstringing small businesses just when we need innovation the most.”

American Tort Reform Foundation President Tiger Joyce said, “While Florida has made several improvements to its civil justice system in recent years, including Governor Ron DeSantis revamping the state Supreme Court which adopted the Daubert standard for scientific evidence, there is still work to do. South Florida’s place among the 20th anniversary Everlasting Judicial Hellholes is due to its 16 years on the official Judicial Hellholes rankings and the continued influence of trial lawyers who file frivolous lawsuits in the Sunshine State. We’re hopeful that Florida will continue improving and can stay off of the Judicial Hellholes list when the 2021-2022 report is released in December.” 

Other jurisdictions on the list of Everlasting Judicial Hellholes were Illinois, California, Louisiana, New York, Pennsylvania and St. Louis. 

Related Content: Small Business News | Florida

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