December 2012

Instagram and Your Legal Rights

This post was originally published on the Alliance for Justice’s blog and can be found here.

The REAL danger in Instagram's new Terms of Use: forced arbitration

Perhaps you’ve read about the controversy over new “Terms of Use” from the photo-sharing service Instagram, which now is owned by Facebook.  Under the terms, if you use Instagram it is free to sell your photos, your likeness and pretty much anything else it knows about you to advertisers – without any further consent on your part, and without compensating you.  And if, by some chance, you’re under 18, Instagram assumes that when you click “accept,” at least one parent has read over the terms and agreed to them on your behalf.

The Atlantic: One Quick Answer to Sandy Hook? Repeal the 2005 Arms Act

Should those who make and sell guns be immune from lawsuits?  One prominent legal analyst argues the law needs to change.  Check out Andrew Cohen’s article for The Atlantic.

Plan B Fiscal Cliff Proposal Limits the Rights of Patients

Last night, the House Majority included legislation in their “Plan B” fiscal cliff proposal that would limit the legal rights of injured patients.  This happened on the same day a new study was released from Johns Hopkins showing that at least 4,082 surgical “never events” occur each year.

Let America Know: December

Be sure to check out the full version of the December issue of the Let America Know newsletter.  

WSJ Misrepresents Personal Injury Law In Support Of ALEC Effort To Deny Asbestos Relief In Ohio

This post was originally published on Media Matters for America’s blog and can be found here.

A Wall Street Journal editorial echoed right-wing talking points to endorse an Ohio bill that would restrict asbestos victims from proving their claims at trial. But the editorial, which claims "rampant fraud" exists in asbestos-related litigation, provides no evidence of systemic abuse, conceals the fact that multiple companies can be legally responsible for asbestos injuries, and fails to disclose that the state legislation is a corporate-funded American Legislative Exchange Council bill pushed by top Republican ALEC officials.

Don’t Be Duped by ATRA’s “Hellholes” Report

Every year, the American Tort Reform Association (ATRA) releases a new edition of its “Judicial Hellholes” report. As you can see below, this has been widely ridiculed and debunked. The effort serves as an early holiday present for the insurance, tobacco, and drug companies that bankroll ATRA’s efforts to attack the civil justice system in order to avoid accountability for negligent corporate behavior. 

Delayed Justice is Denied Justice

Why Court Funding is Essential to Our Democracy

On this site we talk about how justice has been denied for Americans across the country.  We often focus on something called “tort reform” – or efforts led by corporate front groups to close the courthouse doors on plaintiffs (i.e. consumers, employees, and small businesses).  But Americans’ legal rights are also threatened because courts are struggling with not having enough money to operate.  In fact, today our justice system is in severe jeopardy.

Generic Drug Immunity Redux

Karen suffered “hell on earth” because of a generic drug, according to her burn surgeon.  Is the maker immune from responsibility?    

Last week the Supreme Court agreed to hear a case that could have an impact on those who are injured after taking a generic drug.

Stop Big Asbestos from Limiting Justice

We just got word that today the Ohio state senate is set to vote on HB 380, an American Legislative Executive Council (ALEC) and U.S. Chamber-backed bill that would tip the scales of justice in favor of corporations that killed Ohio workers and their families by exposing them to asbestos.  Shockingly this is happening in the state with the eighth highest rate of asbestos deaths in the country.