Illinois county once again leads list of 'hellholes'

Business Insurance
Monday, December 20, 2004

Although the civil justice environment for business appears to be improving, there still are some ''judicial hellholes'' on the map that must be addressed, says a longtime tort reform advocate.
Victor E. Schwartz, general counsel of the American Tort Reform Assn., called for more work to tackle such problems during a Washington press conference last week, where the group unveiled its ''Judicial Hellholes 2004'' report.

Joanne Doroshow, executive director of the New York-based Center for Justice & Democracy, which opposes the tort reforms sought by ATRA, issued a statement blasting the study.
ATRA has ''repackaged its 'judicial hellhole' report as a wholesale attack on judges rather than juries,'' she said.
''The American public expects their judges to be fair and impartial,'' Ms. Doroshow said.
''In particular, judges should not have to look over their shoulder to calculate how their decisions might play with the big business members of ATRA. Unlike legislators or officials of the executive branch, judges are not supposed to be advocates of particular interests like this,'' she said.
Ms. Doroshow called the report ''nothing more than an intimidation tactic against judges who are not beholden to corporate interests.''
For a copy of the complete article, contact CJ&D.

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