Contact These Florida Representatives Today on Prejudgment Interest

Florida House Subcommittee Passes Prejudgment Interest Bill; Contact These Florida Representatives Today

The Florida House Civil Justice & Claims Subcommittee today voted by an 11-4 margin to advance HB 469 relating to Prejudgment Interest. Sponsored by Rep. Shawn Harrison (R-Tampa), the Florida Chamber opposes this bill because:

  • Prejudgment Interest will further increase the cost of litigation;
  • Allows for interest on damages that have not yet been determined by the court as payable or reasonable, including attorney fees;
  • Will force businesses into a “sue and settle” posture because of delays in the court system and increased costs; and
  • Penalizes the defendant for defending cases that might not be legitimate.

Please click here to THANK the following lawmakers for voting against HB 469:

  • Rep. Jay Fant (R-Jacksonville)
  • Rep. Colleen Burton (R-Lakeland)
  • Rep. George Moraitis (R- Ft. Lauderdale)
  • Rep. Frank White (R-Pensacola)

Please click here to share your concerns with the following lawmakers, who voted to support HB 469:

  • Rep. Heather Fitzenhagen (R-Ft. Myers)
  • Rep. Erin Grall (R-Vero Beach)
  • Rep. Shawn Harrison (R-Tampa)

What’s Next:

HB 469 has two committee stops remaining, before heading the House Floor.

Prejudgment Interest Bill Passes in the Senate, Help Stop it in the House

The Florida Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday approved SB 334 by a 6-2 margin. The “prejudgment interest” bill allows interest to be charged on damages from the date the injury or tort occurred, not from the date the legal decision was made, as is the current law. Delays in the legal system, which might not be due to the defendant, will only further drive up the cost of personal injury lawsuits against Floridians and force businesses into a “sue-and-settle” position.

Looking ahead to tomorrow, the Florida House Civil Justice and Claims Subcommittee will take up the House’s version of prejudgment interest beginning at 9 a.m., when they hold a hearing for HB 469, sponsored by Rep. Shawn Harrison (R-Tampa).

Take action now and urge Representatives on the Florida House Civil Justice and Claims Subcommittee to vote NO on HB 469.

What’s Next for SB 334?

Did You Know Florida has one of the worst legal climates in the country (ranked 44th of the 50 states)?

Florida’s legal climate costs households $3400 in a “lawsuit abuse tax” thanks to the amount and cost of litigation. Job creators look at many factors when deciding to move to or expand their business and a bottom-10 legal climate only deters economic growth. We should be working to improve our legal climate.

Act Now – Urge Lawmakers to Oppose Prejudgment Interest Bill(s)

This Week: One Hearing in the House, One Hearing in the Senate

The Florida Legislature is seriously considering passing “Prejudgment Interest” during the 2017 Florida Legislative Session.

February 21 at 3:30 p.m., the Florida Senate Judiciary Committee will take up SB 334, sponsored by Sen. Greg Steube (R-Sarasota), related to “Prejudgment Interest.”

On February 23, at 9 a.m., the Florida House Civil Justice and Claims Subcommittee will take up HB 469, sponsored by Rep. Shawn Harrison (R-Tampa).

Take action now by clicking BOTH links below to send one email to the Senate Judiciary Committee and one email to the House Civil Justice and Claims Subcommittee.

  • Click here to urge Representatives on the House Civil Justice and Claims Subcommittee to VOTE NO on HB 469.
  • Click here to urge Senators on the Senate Judiciary Committee to VOTE NO on SB 334.

“Prejudgment Interest” allows interest to be charged on damages from the date the injury or tort occurred, not from the date the legal decision was made, as is the current law. Delays in the legal system, which might not be due to the defendant, will only further drive up the cost of personal injury lawsuits against Floridians and businesses.

Did you know that Florida has one of the worst legal climates in the country (ranked 44th of the 50 states)? Florida’s legal climate costs households $3400 in a “lawsuit abuse tax” thanks to the amount and cost of litigation.

Job creators look at many factors when deciding to move to or expand their business and a bottom-10 legal climate only deters economic growth. We should be working to improve our legal climate.

Trial Lawyer Bill Could Cost Your Business Extra Money

A bill filed today could increase the cost of doing business in Florida for companies who are sued by trial lawyers just looking for another quick payday.

Prejudgment interest is the interest accrued as part of a lawsuit from the date of the claim to the time the final judgement is given.

HB 469, filed by Shawn Harrison (R-Tampa) and SB 334, filed by Senator Greg Steube (R-Sarasota), would make it so that interest would be accrued not following the date of judgment but upon the time the injury began. This is especially problematic if delays in court were to occur, all the while collecting interest, and could force companies into settling more court cases to avoid paying additional interest.

Florida already has a bottom-10 legal climate, and bills like prejudgment interest, the trial lawyers’ top priority for the 2017 legislative session, will only increase the costs of Florida’s litigious legal climate and force job creators into a worsening cycle of “sue and settle”.

The Florida Chamber will keep you informed about the progress of this bill. Contact us today to learn how you can get involved by emailing me at cjohnson@flchamber.com.

What Can You Do?

These bills are currently both waiting to be assigned to their committees of reference. But you can help be part of the solution today by joining the discussion at the Florida Chamber’s 2017 Capitol Days, held March 21 to 23 in Tallahassee.