Tort Reformers Continue to Attack The Civil Justice System
The American Tort Reform Association (ATRA) started a movement whose mission is to engage in classic fearmongering. For many decades this movement has portrayed our civil justice legal system as broken and lays blame for a corrupt system at the feet of lawyers and judges. The ATRA attempts to get the public to buy in to their illusion by claiming that we live in a world of jackpot justice where juries give wads of money away in the most frivolous of lawsuits. Nothing could be further from the truth.
The Administrative Office of the Pennsylvania Courts has recently reported that medical malpractice verdicts in Pennsylvania have reached a 15 year low. “In 2015, according to recent statistics from the AOPC, 101 medical malpractice cases were tried to a jury verdict in Pennsylvania, which is a more than 20 percent drop from the year before, and a nearly 70 percent drop from the average of 326 medical malpractice verdicts that were handed up each year from 2000 through 2003.” Of the 101 cases that went to verdict, 79 resulted in a defense verdict. Of the verdicts that were in favor of the plaintiffs, only two were in an 8-figure range. Additionally, there were four non-jury medical malpractice verdicts in 2015. All were rendered in favor of the defendant. Consequently, tort reformers who attack the civil justice system as being out of control are effectively lying to the American public.
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