New Report Ranks Florida’s Civil Court System the Worst “Judicial Hellhole” in the Nation

by | Dec 5, 2017

A new report says Florida leads the nation for having the “most unfair” court system when it comes to their handling of civil litigation. That’s the conclusion of a report issued Tuesday by the American Tort Reform Foundation (ATRA).

“This year, thanks to a state high court majority’s barely contained contempt for the policy-making authority of the legislative and executive branches of government, and a notoriously aggressive and sometimes lawless plaintiffs’ bar, Florida earns the ignominious #1 ranking among eight Judicial Hellholes, even as authorities have begun to crack down on some of the lawsuit industry’s most obviously fraudulent rackets,” said ATRA President Tiger Joyce.

It marks the first time in its 16-year history that the report says “enough shade has been cast on the Sunshine State to rank it as the nation’s worst” state for civil court cases.

The association cites Florida Supreme Court rulings that have expanded what it calls “liability-expanding decisions” and “contempt for the lawmaking authority of legislators and the governor” as among the reasons Florida is the worst state in the nation for civil litigation.

ATRA says Florida’s ranking is also the result of “fraudulent and abusive practices in South Florida and elsewhere” by personal injury attorneys.

The Florida Chamber of Commerce says the ranking is further evidence that Florida’s legal climate is among the worst in America.

“Lawsuit abuse in Florida is an increasingly serious and expensive problem, and it just keeps getting worse. On average, it translates into a $3,400 ‘tax’ for Florida’s families each year, due to increased lawsuit abuse costs,” said Mark Wilson, President and CEO of the Florida Chamber.

Other jurisdictions following Florida on the annual list of Judicial Hellholes are:  California, St. Louis, New York City, Philadelphia, New Jersey, Madison and Cook Counties, Illinois, and Louisiana.



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