Congress has recently introduced several bills related to the civil justice system that impact the constitutional rights of all Americans. In general, these bills are favorable to negligent care providers and large corporations and make it more difficult for us to exercise our Seventh Amendment right to a jury trial. Perhaps the most troubling is:
· H.R. 985, the “Fairness in Class Action Litigation and Furthering Asbestos Claims Transparency Act” – this bill will virtually wipe out class actions, mass torts and multidistrict litigation, which are often the most viable option for injured patients and consumer to seek compensation when they have been harmed by large corporations and manufacturers. The bill also makes it difficult for asbestos victims to recover.
In addition, the US House of Representatives has also proposed H.R. 1215, the “Protecting Access to Care Act of 2017.” This bill is not currently on the floor this week, but was sent to the House for consideration as a whole on February 28, 2017. The bill significantly limits the rights of people harmed by medical professionals. If passed, the law would impose harsh time limits on lawsuits, impede the right to trial by jury and limit certain damages to $250,000, even in states where such limits are unconstitutional. In short, this bill protects negligent physicians and those who prescribe dangerous drugs or devices.
It is important to contact your legislators to let them know you oppose any legislation that adversely affects your access to justice.
Click here to contact Congress and ask your legislator to oppose these bills.
Contacting lawmakers is the most effective way to change what happens on the floors of the House and Senate.