Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Med Mal filings down in TN, where's the crisis???



Civil Justice System Under Attack with False Propaganda

Groups Working to Increase Profits by Taking Away Tennesseans Constitutional Rights

Nashville— Tennessee’s civil justice system works by promoting responsible behavior and holding wrongdoers accountable for the harm they cause others. Groups have recently started using propaganda based on fictitious numbers to try and convince Tennesseans to give up their right to a trial by jury while giving big business and insurance companies more profits. Real facts, published by credible sources not one-sided “think tanks”, show Tennessee provides a great environment for business, large and small, while maintaining a system of civil justice that works for all of its citizens, rich and poor.

“Most of the information circulating recently regarding so-called “lawsuit abuse” has been spun to misrepresent the facts and mislead the public.” said TAJ President Phillip Miller. “The real facts, backed up by real sources, prove there is no “lawsuit” crisis in Tennessee. Blaming “the civil justice system” for job loss is just a smokescreen for the real intent of these groups – finding yet one more “bail-out” for business that everyone else will pay for.”

“The current civil justice system is the only system of checks and balances ordinary citizens can use to protect them and their rights. Unfortunately, people who are the biggest beneficiaries of the Constitution are working to take the Constitutional rights of others away so they can line their own pockets. That is a sad reality,” continued Miller.

Texas and Mississippi are often used as positive examples in the lawsuit propaganda. Facts illustrate “lawsuit reform” did not benefit either state. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Mississippi’s unemployment rate is at an all time high, and they are also ranked 46th in the nation for business climate. Texas currently faces a $25 billion deficit, and according to the U.S. Census Bureau, contains the nation’s highest rate of uninsured citizens – 24.5 percent.

Prior to the passage of “lawsuit reform” in Texas, 152 counties did not have a single obstetrician, four years later, the same number of counties still do not have an obstetrician. Rural counties do not have OB/GYN or other specialty doctors because there are not enough people and patients, not because of fictitious lawsuit abuse. However in Tennessee, medical malpractice filings have dropped 44 percent over the last 3 years and the premiums paid by doctors have dropped 23 percent.

“There are those that think false propaganda and phony statements will fool Tennesseans and scare them enough to give up their constitutional rights.” said Miller. “We are the Tennessee Association for Justice, and our members are sworn to uphold the Constitution. For us, that’s not an empty promise. Tennesseans deserve better than this. They are trusted in the ballot box, they can be trusted in the jury box as well.”

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www.tnaj.org/TAJFACTS

Jill Hudson

Communications Director

o. 615.329.3000

c. 615.715.4494