Texas is no longer among the nationâ€™s worst civil court jurisdictions according to the American Tort Reform Foundationâ€™s ninth annual Judicial HellholesÂ® report. The stateâ€™s Gulf Coast, long ranked among the nationâ€™s worst jurisdictions for litigation abuses, remains on the â€œwatch list.â€
â€œTexas has worked hard to recover from its reputation as the â€˜worldâ€™s courtroom,â€™ and weâ€™ve enjoyed a great deal of success reining in abusive litigation over the past 25 years,â€ said Lee Parsley, president of the Texas Civil Justice League. â€œThe Lone Star State has weathered the worst of a weakened economy in part because of a fair and predictable legal environment that encourages business expansion and investment.â€
Despite overall improvements in the stateâ€™s civil justice system, the Gulf Coast remains on the Judicial HellholesÂ® â€œwatch list.â€ â€œThe Gulf Coast of Texas has long been recognized as one of the toughest places in America for corporate defendants to receive a fair trial,â€ according to the 2010â€“11 report. â€œOnce a perennial Judicial Hellhole, the area, which includes several of Houstonâ€™s surrounding counties, is at the center of numerous mass litigations and is infamous for huge awards.â€
The reportâ€™s findings are based on surveys of American Tort Reform Association members and litigation in â€œjudicial hellholesâ€ verified through independent research of media accounts, academic and public policy studies, court dockets, judicial branch statistics and other publicly available information.
Founded in 1986, the Texas Civil Justice League was the stateâ€™s first business liability and legal reform coalition and is a founding state partner of the American Tort Reform Association.
The American Tort Reform Foundationâ€™s 2010â€“11 Judicial HellholesÂ®Â report is available atÂ www.judicialhellholes.org.