I recently heard on Facebook and have had several conversations about the court dockets. As some of you know, my wife is a Supreme Court Justice in New York. And I regularly practice in other courts (not in her court though!) and I just have one reaction to all of these people and businesses attacking personal injury victims and lawyers. Attacking tort cases. Wanting limits on filing or damages.
Have you ever been to a court calendar call?
Have you seen the cases called?
Go to your local county or supreme court for a full calendar day. Go see what cases are being called. Very few are actually negligence, personal injury, or tort related. Very few. Many times I may be one of 2-3 tort cases on a court calendar of 20, 30, 40, or even more cases.
What are the most common cases?
Foreclosures. Banks taking away peoples' homes. Giant corporations across New York.
Hospitals seeking judgments against patients who went for emergency medical treatment and cannot pay for it. So the hospital sues the patient for a judgment. The hospital sues the person—but the hospital doesn’t want patients to sue the hospital? Ridiculous.
Large credit cards suing people for defaults. Large companies that are all household names getting judgments against people. Taking their cars or even their homes.
Other utility and service providers who are taking judgments against people who cannot pay the monthly bills for too long. These very large providers that you have heard of before, or see commercials for constantly, are taking judgments against people’s houses.
Then there are of course divorces, a large part of the docket. There are also inmate petitions, contract matters, tax cases, name changes, and some other odds and ends. Very few personal injury or tort cases though.
Moral of the story?
Go to court and see the types of cases that are being called. You’d be surprised to actually learn that personal injury victims make up a VERY small amount of the caseload. Very small—super small. But the “media” and the large lobby firms, or the hospitals, and the large corporations, all want you to think that personal injury lawsuits are clogging up the system and causing problems for our courts. That personal injury cases are simply sapping all of the judicial resources and money in each county.
But the cold hard truth is that large corporations are taking over the courts and preventing the public at large from being able to litigate cases and bring their disputes. Some of the largest corporations in the county, Fortune 500 companies—household names—are all polluting the courts.
Victims of medical malpractice are absolutely not.
But what do you think? I would love to hear from you! Leave a comment or I also welcome your phone call on my toll-free cell at 1-866-889-6882 or you can drop me an e-mail at [email protected] You are always welcome to request my FREE book, The Seven Deadly Mistakes of Malpractice Victims, at the home page of my website at www.protectingpatientrights.com.