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« $63.8 million final judgment entered in Eastern District patent infringement suit | Main | Altman Weil survey finds higher profits, billing rates, plus plans to hire associates, but partner de-equitization down only slightly »

May 24, 2011

Comments

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i went to the same school as patrick. i remeber those girls from my school who wrote in. they were white trash...i always felt so bad for them.

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HHH Yes, the design of national policy is important, how our economic development plans for the next five years, how the implementation, how to make our economy even faster. Are designed to advance our focus to invest money in what ways it should be carefully arranged.

Josh Brown

They need to pass a law like this in every state put all the lawyers out of war maybe they can find some kind of productive work then.

Greg Marcum

I agree with Mr. Shepherd's comments and would add that the premise of the legislation is flawed. The notion that small businesses are paying too much to defend frivolous lawsuit is incorrect. I have defended many small businesses in rather small lawsuits for 10 years. The insurer pays the legal fees, not the small business. Moreover, the insurer beats down my hourly rate to ridiculously low levels AND they audit every bill to strike off items they deem "unjustified" or not according to their standards. Every case is tightly budgeted and over 95% result in small settlements or summary judgment. This bill will result in fewer lawsuits because small companies or persons suffering wrongs cannot afford to pay the litigation fees charged by the counsel representing big corporations, i.e the Fulbrights, Baker Botts, Locke Lords, Winsteads, etc.

William Shepherd

Texas Republicans Still Don’t Get It! "Loser Pays" Hurts Them More Than Democrats!

Last week, I reported that the vast majority of Texas Republicans will be harmed- not helped - if Gov. Rick Perry’s “Loser Pays” law is passed. The conversation quickly turned to this fact in publications and on the Internet. Over the weekend, a compromise was reached in a Texas senate committee which then voted unanimously to turn out a bill for the Senate to consider. However, that BILL DOES NOTHING TO PROTECT REPUBLICANS FROM THEIR OWN PARTY!

Whether or not frivolous lawsuits abound in Texas is a matter of debate. The senate bill gives judges the ability to dismiss cases sooner with the “loser,” one side or the other, paying the other side’s legal fees and costs. Despite the fact that frivolous defenses to lawsuits would not be handled the same way, arguments could perhaps be made on both sides of the early dismissal provision.

Yet, the provision in the proposed senate bill which will harm Republicans more than Democrats remains:

I repeat, the vast majority of Republicans are conservative and save money which they DO NOT WANT TO GAMBLE! Also, there are apparently more Republicans in Texas than Democrats. Republicans do not want Texans to file frivolous lawsuits, but they absolutely must have the ability to file their own lawsuits if they are treated wrongly. If not, why would insurance companies, financial institutions and large corporations bother to treat them right? There will be no downside and they can simply walk all over Texans of all parties!

Forced into Cheap Settlements (THE HUGE REMAINING PROBLEM WITH THIS BILL)

ATTENTION MR. AND MRS. REPUBLICAN: Under both the house and senate versions: If a billion dollar corporation cheated you out of $200,000, you should be able to file a claim to recover your losses. You may agree to settle for less, but what if you were only offered $5,000? If you went to trial and lost (*) you would not only get zero, but YOU WOULD HAVE TO PAY AN AMOUNT WHICH COULD EVEN BE HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS! (* Ask any lawyer: The outcome of any lawsuit is unpredictable and for a variety of reasons many legitimate cases are lost.)

Could you afford to take that gamble? Likely not, so you would instead have to accept the $5,000 offer, a bitter pill to swallow. This is similar to being dealt a fantastic hand in a friendly "penny-ante" poker game only to have some rich stranger raise you $100,000. Your hand is an almost certain winner but you can't afford the risk so, sadly, you must lay down the winning hand.

“Loser Pays” is good for billionaires and multi-millionaires but bad for everyone else!

If your house burns down and the insurance company says "the policy doesn't cover this," could you risk your life savings seeking to collect the money denied by your insurance company? What if your bank is careless causing your account to be robbed? If your parents are gypped out of half their retirement savings, could they risk the other half to file a claim against Wall Street?

Small business owners: Could you risk bankruptcy to sue a contractor who did not pay you or a supplier who delivers faulty inventory or equipment? Big companies can risk having to pay the other side if they lose, but can you? If the answer is “no,” prepare to be at their mercy in court and to have to settle for peanuts.

"Winners pay too!"

The senate committee tweaked the house bill, but it included that under this "loser pays" legislation you could even win a legitimate law suit, but lose all that you won by being ordered to pay it to the other side. In the example above, if an insurance company, financial institution or large corporation offered $100,000 but even if you won, but won less than $80,000, you would have to pay up to all you won to cover the cost of their high priced lawyers!

A world without law suits may sound good, but would it be? If “Loser Pay’s” passes, insurance companies, banks and large companies would be practically immune from law suits. So, how do you think will they treat us all then?

REPUBLICANS: Contact your representative and senator in Austin today and say: "HEY, I VOTED FOR YOU! YOU NEED TO REPRESENT MEN AND NOT JUST INSURANCE COMPANIES, GIANT CORPORATIONS AND FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS.

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