Poll: The Verdict From The Corner Office

Corporate executives think the high cost of civil justice is a drag on U.S. business and the economy. Fully 83% say their decisions are increasingly affected by the fear of lawsuits, and a 62% majority say the legal system significantly hampers U.S. competitiveness. Executives know whom they blame for the problem: plaintiffs, the contingency-fee system, and generous juries. They are also quite firm about the solutions. An overwhelming 97% favor much more use of alternative methods to resolve disputes, and 91% want judicial screening of cases. But most oppose restrictions on expert witnesses and don't want to see more government spending on the courts.

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