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AAJ Statement on Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing on Corporate Immunity

Witnesses Call for Clear, Science-Based Guidelines; Bipartisan Group of Senators Question Wisdom of Blanket Immunity

May 12,2020

Washington, DC  The following is a statement from American Association for Justice CEO Linda Lipsen following today’s hearing held by the Senate Judiciary Committee on immunity:

“What was made clear in the hearing today is that corporate immunity is not going to help businesses reopen and keep workers safe on the job. All of the witnesses at today’s hearing, including representatives of workers and the business community, agreed that clear, enforceable and science-based public health rules are what’s needed to safely reopen the economy. Unfortunately the Administration has failed to issue any such guidelines.”

“Corporate immunity is an obstacle to economic recovery because some businesses will act irresponsibly if they know they can’t be held accountable. That means more workers get sick, and consumers don’t head back to stores and restaurants because they won’t feel safe.”

Bipartisan highlights from today’s hearing:
“It’s essential that we not forget in this moment the structural separation of powers that’s found in our Constitution…The fact that we might like a particular policy doesn’t make it federal… If we set this aside, we’ll be doing significant violence to our constitutional structure.”
-Sen. Mike Lee, (R-UT)
“There is no wave of litigation…but there is a clear need for protection for customers, for employees and for our country.”
-Sen. Chris Coons, (D-DE)
“I wish this hearing was entitled ‘Why has our government failed to produce science-based standards of worker safety and healthy business environments in this age of COVID-19.’”
-Sen. Dick Durbin, (D-IL)
“You can mandate a uniform federal standard of care, you can mandate a federal remedy for that…but what you’re saying is what could be constitutionally problematic is if you just get rid of all of the state remedies and replace them with nothing.”
-Sen. Josh Hawley, (R-MO­)



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

Peter Knudsen
Phone: 202-684-9588