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Widener Univ. School of Law

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Thursday, March 30, 2006

CJD Hearts West Virginia, Mississippi, Illinois, Etc.

As previously noted, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has released its new list of worst states for "legal fairness,"

poll[ing] more than 1,400 senior attorneys to explore how reasonable and fair the tort liability system is perceived to be by U.S. businesses. The attorneys were asked to judge a number of factors, including overall treatment of tort and contract litigation, treatment of class action suits and mass consolidation suits, judges' impartiality and competence, and juries' predictability and fairness.

The Center for Justice & Democracy has responded, with press releases tied to Gulf Coast states, Wisconsin, Illinois, West Virginia, and Florida.  In most cases, CJ&D's response is not so much that the criticized states have great legal systems as that (a) the Chamber's survey is solely "based on nothing more than the views of corporate lawyers who defend corporate wrongdoers" and (b) the states are plenty business-friendly anyway.  For example:

As one illustration of how completely erroneous these “rankings” are, the same day the Chamber released its report, an economic survey by Chicago-based Pollina Corporate Real Estate Inc., evaluating businesses based on 26 factors put Alabama as #5 in the nation for business friendliness.

* * *

CJ&D also condemned the Chamber for focusing attacks on several other states including Wisconsin, Illinois, West Virginia, and Florida, all of which are doing well or better than they have in recent years in terms of business climate. Florida was just named one of the best states in the nation for doing businesses by the Pollina poll.

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/tortsprof/2006/03/cjd_hearts_west.html

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