A new survey finds that most trial lawyers believe the time and costs involved in the discovery process are pushing worthy cases towards settlement when they should go to trial.
The American College of Trial Lawyers and the University of Denver’s Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System surveyed nearly 15,000 trial lawyers from all fifty states. Eighty-five percent said civil litigation in general, and discovery in particular, is too expensive.
Despite the gloomy report card, IAALS Executive Director and former Colarado Supreme Court judge Rebecca Kourlis told Legal Times she is heartened that the legal community is calling for change. “Lawyers have a significant economic investment in the status quo and their capacity to step back and recognize that this isn’t serving their clients as it should gives me new motivation to forge ahead,” she said.
Justice Kourlis said the IAALS will be making recommendations to decision-makers at both state and federal levels by summer 2009, and the ACTL will make its own recommendations early next year.