Governor Signs Fair Share Act into Law

Lawsuit abuse reform will restore fairness and prevent frivolous lawsuits 

Rep. Dan Moul (R-Adams/Franklin) attended today’s ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda at which Gov. Tom Corbett signed the Fair Share Act into law.  Moul is a steadfast supporter of the legislation, which restores fairness to the state’s judicial system and opens the door to those who would do business in Pennsylvania. 

“Passage of the Fair Share Act is good news for Pennsylvania,” said Moul.  “It will put an end to frivolous lawsuits that hinder business development and job growth.  It will cut medical liability insurance costs and that will mean savings to consumers.” 

According to the Small Business Association, small businesses are responsible for creating about 64 percent of all new jobs.  Yet, about three-quarters of small business owners say their business decisions have been hampered by fear they could become the target of a frivolous or unfair lawsuit.   

By a 116-83 vote Monday, the House passed Senate Bill 1131, which closely resembles House Bill 1, a measure that that passed the House in April.  The Fair Share Act will ensure that defendants found less than 60 percent liable in a civil case would be responsible for only their “fair share” of damages. Previously, someone found even 10 percent liable could be forced to pay 100 percent of a jury’s verdict if other parties found responsible were unable to pay. 

Absent commonsense legal reform, Pennsylvania has experienced skyrocketing medical malpractice insurance rates, which have driven medical specialists out of state and increased the cost of health care for consumers.   

The Fair Share Act was signed into law in 2002, but was struck down on a procedural court challenge.  It was passed again and vetoed by Gov. Ed Rendell in 2005.  When Corbett signed the Fair Share Act into law this afternoon, he fulfilled one of his administration’s highest priorities.  Similar legislation has already been enacted in more than 40 other states.   

State Representative Dan Moul
91st District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Contact:  Donna Pinkham

Share |