A leading Republican in the U.S. House wrote that “Main Street” businesses following “rules and guidelines set by state and federal officials to reopen their doors and reimagine their operations” should not need “to worry day and night about getting sued, too.”
In a recent op-ed, Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR-02), Ranking Member of the House Energy & Commerce Committee, called for litigation reform solutions that will protect reopening businesses, like those in the marketing research and data analytics industry, from unwarranted COVID-19-related lawsuits.
“A few states have passed legislation or taken executive action to ensure their states have implemented commonsense protections so that American job creators and small businesses can have the confidence needed to reopen their places of business and get people back to work without facing frivolous lawsuits,” he continued.
Republican leadership in Congress “have urged inclusion of these simple liability protections in future COVID-19 relief packages… a critical step to giving businesses the certainty they need to get our country up and running again.” Unfortunately, Walden wrote, “trial lawyers are rejecting commonsense reforms because of their vested interest in frivolous litigation. The dots aren’t difficult to connect: more lawsuits equal more dollars for the trial bar. Their opposition is not about safety – everyone agrees safety is a top priority. Does it make good business sense for your favorite restaurant to put its customers in danger? Of course not. This is about trial lawyers lining their pockets.”
The Insights Association is lobbying for “a safe harbor from unwarranted COVID-19-related lawsuits” for our “well-intentioned businesses that are making a reasonable effort to follow government and public health guidelines” as they reopen and try to continue work during the coronavirus crisis. We made the pitch to Congress for federal relief, supported such legislation in Alabama, Louisiana and Minnesota, and cheered the passage of liability-limiting laws in Oklahoma and Utah.