California Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse Honor Assemblyman Ricardo Lara
Editor's Note: Project Lawsuit Abuse regularly highlights lawsuit abuse news from across the country. Today, By Maryann Marino, Regional Director of California Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse, contributed a guest post as part of the continuing Create Jobs, Not Lawsuits tour.
The “Create Jobs, Not Lawsuits” Tour pulled into South Gate for a spirited luncheon and media event last Wednesday. We’ve been traveling around California hearing small business owners share their experiences with lawsuit abuse or fear of lawsuits.
We had good news to announce in South Gate! First, Governor Jerry Brown has signed SB 1186 into law, which will help curb abusive lawsuits alleging violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The reduces the financial incentive to sue businesses by reducing penalties for property owners that are making good faith efforts to comply.
Second, we came to South Gate to present Assemblyman Ricardo Lara (AD-50) with the California Champion Against Lawsuit Abuse Award. Legislation authored by the Assemblyman and signed into law by the Governor, AB 2274, will close a loophole in California law that allowed vexatious litigants – those who repeatedly file frivolous lawsuits – to continue filing lawsuits. His efforts will help relieve businesses from the threat of unwarranted lawsuits.
South Gate’s mayor and one of its City Council members with joined dozens of small business owners to share their experiences of how lawsuit abuse has hurt the city and its small businesses. One businessman explained how he was sued because the font on an advertisement wasn’t a particular size. Another explained how the state’s complicated ADA laws led to a lawsuit being filed even while the business’s bathroom was being renovated to bring it up to code. The event received media coverage in Spanish on Univision, and in Chinese on EDI-Media, because the reporters know that minority communities are especially hard-hit by abusive lawsuits.