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A report last week by free-market think tank Pacific Research Institute broke down states into “saints,” “sinners,” and “salvageables,” depending on their dedication — or lack thereof — to tort reform. Co-authors Lawrence McQuillan and Hovannes Abramyan ranked all 50 states by comparing their legal systems in 39 variables selected through consultation with legal experts and professors. Texas was canonized for the best tort system, while Vermont was consigned to perdition. Rhode Island may still be saved, the authors say, because it is currently considering reforms that would cap “pain and suffering” awards at $250,000 and create a pretrial screening process to block certain claims. The Association of Trial Lawyers of America called the study “just another phony report bought and paid for by CEOs and big corporations intent on lining their pockets.”
Gabe Nelson can be contacted at [email protected].

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