Corporations rule, and the American public may be at risk.
Washington, DC – President Burton LeBlanc, of the American Association for Justice, alongside other top justice advocates, testified this past November 7, 2013, in opposition of the proposed changes to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. The testimony, as presented before the Judicial Conference of the United States, outlined the concerns surrounding the changes to the rules of civil procedure, and the potential bar to corporate liability in personal injury cases.
“These changes would devastate Americans’ access to justice and rig the courts in favor of corporations that violate our rights,” said LeBlanc. “This will further stack the deck against American citizens and small businesses seeking accountability in court.”
The proposed changes would limit the rules of discovery, decrease the availability and length of depositions, and decrease the incentives to companies in the preservation of critical documents.
Once such example, a case against a nursing home and its owner, James Graff, required over 350 boxes of patient files, company records, and depositions, all of which were required to prove the instance of misconduct and improper care. If this case had been tried under the proposed rules, gathering the evidentiary documents would have been frustrating at best, and may have turned the case in favor of the defrauding party.
As LeBlanc argued, these changes would have a dramatic effect on taxpayers. Cases of government program fraud would become increasingly difficult to prove, and would frustrate judicial proceedings in the process.
“This will force cases to be decided before all the facts are found and brought to light,” added LeBlanc. “If Americans can’t seek justice in the courtroom, what safety information could corporations hide from the public? If no one is accountable, no one is safe.”
LeBlanc and the American Association for Justice continue to fight for the American people, giving everyone a fair chance against the most powerful corporations.
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