What is Your Opinion on Tort Reform?

We hope that our recent blogs shed some light on tort reform and the motives behind organizations like the Institute for Legal Reform (ILR). Tort reform advocates will only tell you half the story in order to advance their agenda. The ILR’s attempts to discredit Stella Liebeck and her landmark personal injury lawsuit against McDonald’s is just one ILR tactic filled with inaccuracies and half-truths.

For example, in the Liebeck case, the media reports boiled it down to a woman receiving a $2.7 million verdict over a cup of spilled coffee. Ask most people about the “hot coffee” case and that is what they will likely remember. However, did you know that Ms. Liebeck originally reached out to McDonald’s for a settlement that would cover her medical expenses from the severe coffee burns? In response, McDonald’s offered to pay $800.00 towards her medical expenses from the hot coffee burns. Ms. Liebeck had over $10,000 in doctor’s bills from her injury.

Ms. Liebeck contacted a personal injury lawyer to help her. A jury awarded her $2.7 million in punitive damages, which the judge reduced to $480,000. The parties settled out of court for an undisclosed amount.

If you suffer harm and need a personal injury lawyer, contact our office for a case review. We are happy to help you recover compensation for your injuries.

One Response to What is Your Opinion on Tort Reform?

  1. A six-part series of videos sponsored by the ILR was recently released on the internet and claims to expose the truth behind Hot Coffee documentary. However, the panelists in the documentary include attorneys who represent corporate clients that push for tort reform legislation. In South Carolina, because of tort reform laws, a deceased 6-year old boy’s family and other injured victims in a miniature train accident last year will have to divide $600,000 amongst each other. How do you place monetary values on death and injuries? Tort reform is less about improving the justice system than it is about shielding businesses—often large corporations—from financial liability for wrongdoing.

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