AAJ Statement on Corporate Forum Shopping Bill
Washington, DC — The following is a statement from American Association for Justice President Larry Tawwater on today’s markup of the “Fraudulent Joinder Prevention Act of 2016” [H.R. 3624] in the in the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee. If enacted, the bill would undermine the authority of states to interpret their own laws by enabling large corporate defendants to force state law claims into federal court, and would impose unprecedented burdens on plaintiffs seeking justice in the courts of their home state.
“H.R. 3624 is the latest in a series of bills aimed at tilting the judicial system to favor corporate interests at the expense of consumers. Large corporations disproportionately stand to benefit from this unnecessary legislation, which would have a devastating impact on Americans’ ability to seek justice when they have been injured by corporate wrongdoing. Additionally, H.R. 3624 would undermine the authority of state courts to enforce state law, while also placing unreasonable burdens on federal courts whose resources are already stretched thin.”
“H.R. 3624 is nothing more than corporate forum shopping. State courts are intended to have significantly broader jurisdiction than federal courts. H.R. 3624 would upend this system by overturning centuries of established legal precedent in order to let corporate defendants pick and choose a forum they believe favors their interests. Consumers deserve better.”
The American Association for Justice works to preserve the constitutional right to trial by jury and to make sure people have a fair chance to receive justice through the legal system when they are injured by the negligence or misconduct of others—even when it means taking on the most powerful corporations. Visit http://www.justice.org.