Access to Courts

Tort reform aims to reduce the ability of victims to bring tort litigation and to reduce damages they can receive.

Utah is famous for a lot of different things, and one of those things is our people’s kindness. We shouldn’t feel bad about initiating a lawsuit, but often times my clients do.  I have to reassure my clients constantly that it is ok to sue and that it’s not immoral. Hopefully this article will explain more about tort reform and give comfort to those in the middle of the process.

Tort reform is the reason why there’s hesitation in the average person to sue, and that’s not by accident. Big business has spent billions on restricting your access to courts. Yes, billions with a B, convincing the American people it’s not in our best interest to sue. The most famous example of trying to limit your access to the courts is the marketing campaign and pr machine put into action against Ms. Liebeck and her suit against McDonalds.   McDonald’s and their insurance company spent big dough misleading the American people about the facts of the case, and they didn’t stop there. McDonald’s was really the beginning of the tort reform movement.

Did you know the plaintiff in a lawsuit can’t mention the presence of insurance without a mistrial and big business is constantly lobbying to impede your ability to use the courts? That’s tort reform. Talk to anyone who works for the insurance industry and the first thing out of their mouth will likely be about frivolous lawsuits. Our judicial system has rules in place specifically designed to prevent frivolous lawsuits but the lie that our courts are slammed with unworthy suits continues to be perpetuated. There are multiple stages and deterrents like attorneys fees to avoid frivolous suits but the lie that our courts are slammed with unworthy suits continues.

It’s no secret that I believe in an open court system. My position is quite clear,  I believe the judicial system is in the best position to settle disputes. I say that because I believe in you and my neighbor to judge the facts. I believe in the jury system. Time and time again, the jury system has proven to me juries are the best way to settle disputes. Is it perfect? No, but nothing is. My hope is that you believe in an open court system as much as I do and you begin to see who’s really on your side.



Dan Garner

Author Dan Garner

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