By definition, a frivolous lawsuit has no basis in law or fact. Even though a great majority of personal injury lawsuits that are filed each year are legitimate, a few that are filed are, simply put, ridiculous. There are generally two reasons that a frivolous lawsuit is filed. The first intention is to harass the defendant. Even if the case is baseless, the defendant has to expend time, energy, and financial resources to get the suit dismissed. Lawsuits can and do tarnish a person’s reputation, which may be one reason behind these types of cases getting filed. Another reason that some frivolous lawsuits are filed is to generate buzz around a topic. These types of lawsuits are generally filed by advocacy groups.
11 Alive reports that a Georgia State Senator has submitted legislation that would target frivolous lawsuits.
State Senator Steve Gooch (R-Dahlonega) has sponsored SB 415. The reason for the bill is that Senator Gooch believes that frivolous lawsuits are hurting Georgia businesses.
The senator pointed to a study done by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce which ranked Georgia 41 out of 50 for “lawsuit climate.” This is the worst ranking the state has held since the survey began in 2015.
The new bill would require evidence that the owner of a property forced someone to commit a crime on the property or knew of an existing threat and could have reasonably taken steps to prevent it.
The bill could affect lawsuits from slip-and-fall litigation to litigation that surrounds sex-trafficking cases. One attorney believes that it would essentially prevent attorneys from arguing on behalf of plaintiffs to establish why a certain settlement amount should be reached.
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