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A growing number of concerned citizens, public officials, lawyers, judges, corporate counsel and law professors are expressing real concern over the proliferation of mass tort litigation and its effect on the civil justice system. The Advisory Committee on Civil Rules and the Working Group on Mass Torts, appointed by the Chief Justice of the United States, issued a massive report in February detailing the overall problem and some of its causes.

Nationally based advocacy groups such as Lawyers for Civil Justice and the Civil Justice Reform Group have been working with similar groups for years in search of procedural or substantive measures that would restore a sense of balance to the pursuit of justice in this area. The Defense Research Institute, an association of more than 22,000 defense trial lawyers and corporate counsel, has recently appointed a task force to consider the issues and formulate recommendations for change. With all these bright minds examining the issue, a reasonable person might wonder why the problem hasn’t been solved by now.

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