“COST” OF LITIGATION 150 150 Lauren Ellerman

Probably once a week, a family will tell our firm, the “cost” of litigation is too great. What do I mean? Although a family may have what we would call a meritorious case, they do not have the money to pay for experts, court reporters, copies etc. And I understand. I don’t have $25,000 sitting in a special “slush – if I want to file a lawsuit fund.” But what does that say about our “justice” system if it costs too much money for citizens to access the system? What does it say about our legal system when families are denied their day in court, because they don’t have thousands of dollars in cash laying around?

There may be a unique remedy, one I fear Virginia will not take kindly to. CLASS ACTION LAWSUITS in healthcare industry. You hear about class action lawsuits against drug companies, the silicon implant manufactures, etc – well what if all of the residents of a nursing home that had received substandard care, filed a class action lawsuit together? Well, that very situation is currently happening in Arkansas courts. The overreaching allegation that the facility was understaffed so as to violate residents rights (contractual and rights to care) allowed 489 suits to be combined. The result, 489 families get to split the costs – and some families, who may not have even known about their legal rights, now have access to our justice system. I say well done. Seems like a responsible ruling, and one that is better for all sides.

About the author

Lauren Ellerman

In 2011, Lauren Ellerman was named "Young Lawyer of the Year" by the Roanoke Bar Association for her work in the community. To speak with Lauren about your personal injury case, contact her at lellerman@frithlawfirm.com.

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