Florida Chamber-Backed, Historic Lawsuit Abuse Reform Bill Passes the Florida Senate and Heads to Governor DeSantis’ Desk
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (March 23, 2023)— Today, the Florida Senate passed HB 837 by a bipartisan 23 to 15 vote, a comprehensive and meaningful lawsuit abuse reform package supported by the Florida Chamber of Commerce and many of our key partners. The bill is now in route to Governor Ron DeSantis’ desk for his signature.
“This is a great day for Florida families, consumers, and local businesses,” said Mark Wilson, President and CEO of the Florida Chamber of Commerce. “The passage of this legislation means that Florida can begin reversing the damage done by billboard and personal injury trial lawyers, begin the process of putting $5,000 a year back into the pockets of Florida families and begin to redirect the billions of dollars spent on frivolous lawsuits each year, enabling Florida families and local businesses to use those dollars to invest in their business, for everyday family expenses, or in their local communities.”
This historic legislation would not have been possible without the vision and leadership of Governor Ron DeSantis, Speaker of the House Paul Renner, Senate President Kathleen Passidomo, and bill sponsors Representatives Tommy Gregory and Tom Fabricio and Senator Travis Hutson who put Floridians above special interests.
“Passing the most meaningful legal reform in Florida’s history will help pull Florida out of the cellar with our nationwide bottom-five legal climate and set us on the path to reaching our Florida 2030 Blueprint goal of being one of the top 12 civil justice systems in the nation,” added Wilson.
The personal injury lawyer industry has habitually used the courts to undo the work and intent of the legislature and the citizens of Florida those elected officials represent. This is evidenced by legal challenges to several of the most impactful recent legal reforms in Florida – from workers’ comp to medical malpractice to the repeal of joint and several liability and others – which all faced legal delays upon being signed into law. While our attorneys have closely reviewed the legislation and unanimously conclude it is legally sound, past behavior is often indicative of future actions. The Florida Chamber anticipates personal injury trial lawyer industry resistance, as the long-overdue dam of frivolous litigation earnings begins to close. The Florida Chamber, through our Litigation & Regulatory Reform Center, has secured expert legal counsel and launched a defense fund to ensure consumers and local businesses can see this historic legislation enacted and protected from further frivolous lawsuits, not getting held up in lengthy and unnecessary courtroom battles. Former Supreme Court Justice Alan Lawson will be heading up the Florida Chamber’s legal effort.
Billboard injury trial lawyers have been attacking this bill since before it was filed and we have no reason to believe they will stop now that Florida’s elected legislature has passed this important legislation or even if and when Governor Ron DeSantis signs it into law. For more information, watch “Meet Mary,” which explains the drastic need for lawsuit abuse reform in Florida and how Florida’s bottom-five legal climate is making Florida more expensive for residents and local businesses: flchm.co/MeetMary.
To watch video testimonials from local businesses impacted by lawsuit abuse, visit: flchm.co/FacesofLawsuitAbuse.