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    November 2011    |   Subscribe   |   

In This Issue
Is Civil Justice Under Attack?
Serve Hot Coffee at Home
Director Talks About the Movie


O'Meara Law Firm, LLC

Timothy Algiers
262-673-7700; 262-334-2331

Dear Timothy,

Motorcycling in America is at an all-time high, but unfortunately so too are deaths and injuries from road accidents. Protect the motorcyclists in your life by taking a second to read and pass along these tips on motorcycle safety. Enjoy a safe ride!



The Truth Behind the McDonald’s Coffee Case
Hot Coffee Documentary Uncovers Campaign to Limit Your Rights

The judge presiding over the famous McDonald’s hot coffee case found the company’s behavior “willful, wanton and reckless.” Little did he know that Stella Liebeck, the 79-year-old woman who only wanted the fast-food giant to pay her medical bills, would soon be called the same, and worse. Nearly two decades later, no single case is more emotionally tied to what many people believe is an epidemic of sham lawsuits. But it turns out that we may have been the real dupes as big business interests used the McDonald’s case to supercharge a campaign of anecdotes, half-truths and distortions for one purpose — to limit access to the court system, the only place the average citizen can go toe to toe with those with money and power.

Sip more Hot Coffee.

Movie Poster
Hot Coffee is a call to action for anyone concerned about our constitutional right to a fair hearing in a court of law by a jury of our peers.

Myth Busters
Myth I:
Injury Lawsuits Are Out of Control

The truth: Tort (personal injury) case filings have been dropping, accounting for less than 5 percent of all civil caseloads in a 2008 seven-state study. Yet, contract cases most often filed by businesses now hog more than 50 percent of the court docket.

Source: Examining the Work of State Courts, National Center for State Courts (download civil case report)

Myth II: Damage Caps Work

The truth: Capping damages on medical malpractice cases does nothing to hold down health care costs, while deaths and serious injuries from medical mistakes continue to occur at alarming rates.

Sources: 2004 Congressional Budget Office Brief (download); The Social Cost of Adverse Medical Events,
Health Affairs, 2011

Myth III:
Judicial Elections Are All Fair

The truth: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce spent “nearly $35 million” in 2008 on pro-business candidates, including state Supreme Court judges, and was ranked first among “Super Spenders” on state judicial elections, 2000 to 2009.

Sources: Assault on Justice, Huffington Post; The New Politics of Judicial Elections, Brennan Center for Justice.

Bookmark Favorites

Hot Coffee Website Asks, “Is Justice Being Served?”
Hot Coffee has people of all political stripes hopping mad and ready to act. Visit the Take Action page, sign up for Action Alerts, make a donation to the Hot Coffee scholarship fund, gift the movie to a favorite politician and follow the conversation on Facebook.

Citizen Groups Lead Effort to Protect Your Rights
As seen in Hot Coffee, the Center for Justice & Democracy and Public Citizen are two nonpartisan citizen groups in the forefront of the fight to protect the legal rights of all Americans. Read what they say about “tort reform” and access to justice.

Investigative Journalist Pens “Tort Reform” Tell-All
Legal affairs reporter Stephanie Mencimer wrote Blocking the Courthouse Doors because, as she says in Hot Coffee, journalists are falling for the orchestrated campaign corporate interests use to limit individual legal rights and protect their own profits.

Host a Hot Coffee House Party
Selected for the 2011 Sundance Film Festival, Hot Coffee has critics calling it “the must-see film of the year.” Register for a free DVD and learn how to get involved!
Lawyer-Director on Hot Coffee
Longtime civil justice attorney-turned-filmmaker Susan Saladoff discusses her directorial debut in “Hot Coffee.”

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