Illinois gets dismal rankings for its liability systems

IIlinois is ranked 48th overall in a survey released during the week surveying business leaders on the fairness and reasonableness of state liability systems by Harris Poll, a global polling firm. Cook County/Chicago received the ranking of the second worst local jurisdictions, in terms of having a fair and reasonable litigation environment. Madison County, Illinois, was tied for third worst in that category.  

The study estimates that if Illinois passes meaningful lawsuit reform, it could reduce the cost of tort settlements by $2,435 per million dollars, and result in a potential 0.92 percent and 2.5 percent increase in employment. Based on current Illinois employment, that’s between 50,000 and 150,000 jobs. In fact, 75 percent of businesses surveyed said that the state’s lawsuit climate impacts where they locate or expand.

The survey found Illinois ranked 48th in overall treatment of tort and contract litigation, 50th in having and enforcing meaningful venue requirements, 49th of treatment of class action lawsuits and mass consolidation lawsuits, 48th in damages, and 47th in timeliness of summary judgment or dismissal. Illinois also ranked 48th in discovery, scientific and technical evidence, judges’ impartiality, judges’ competence, and juries’ fairness.

The survey was conducted for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Institute for Legal Reform. Results were formulated through interviews with in-house general counsel, senior litigators or attorneys, and other senior executives who are knowledgeable about litigation matters.


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