FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE- October 24, 2012 (Washington,D.C.): Speaking at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s 13th annual Legal Reform Summit in Washington, D.C., former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani stressed the need for New York to enact meaningful lawsuit reform. He noted that past efforts to pass tort reform had been stalled by the powerful trial lawyer lobby, and highlighted the substantial fiscal and social costs of frivolous lawsuits.
The cost of lawsuits for New York City was hundreds of millions during Giuliani’s tenure as mayor. Frivolous lawsuits are a major issue for local governments, with the cost of lawsuits on New York City alone estimated to exceed $730 million in the coming year. Lawsuits have taken a toll on taxpayers and diverted resources from critical services, such as city teachers, police officers, and firefighters, noted the former Mayor. Giuliani highlighted a case in which a criminal fleeing from the police tripped on a pothole and was awarded $70 million for his injuries. “When a jury in New York sees NYC as a defendant, they forget that they are really the defendant – that they are paying out their money and they pay out money in huge quantities,” he said.