MISSOURI – This year Missouri ranked number 4 out of all 50 states in an annual poll. This is not the accomplishment it sounds. The poll discussed is the American Tort Reform Associations 2015-16 list of Judicial Hellholes. The association has even given Missouri the nick-name, “Show-Me-Your-Lawsuits-State.”
In response to seeing this information, KMZU’s Ashley Johnson conducted an interview with Missouri’s State Director for the National Federation of Independent Business, Brad Jones. Jones explained a Missouri bill that is in the works, that he hopes will help curb the excessive lawsuits that take place in Missouri.
The bill would affect requirements for Missouri lawsuits, specifically the use of expert witnesses. The bill would enact the Daubert Standard, which would require proof to be provided to the judge indicating that a witness is actually an expert in the field they are testifying. More than 30 states use this standard, as well as the federal government. Jones believes this is important, especially since Missouri was ranked number four in all 50 states in the American Tort Reform Associations poll of judicial hellholes; even dubbing Missouri the “Show-Me-Your-Lawsuit-State.”
Jones says this negatively affects Missouri’s small business economy. He is concerned about the survival of small businesses within the state. Jones states many people believe small business owners are millionaires and can afford lawsuits, when in reality this is just not the case. Many small businesses that defend themselves in a lawsuit go under, even if they win. The cost of defending themselves in the lawsuit is often just too much to continue covering operational costs.