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Report: Florida files more personal injury lawsuits than any other state — by far


  • By Mark Gordon
  • | 3:30 p.m. July 13, 2023
  • | 2 Free Articles Remaining!
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A new report on states with the highest amount of personal injury lawsuits reveals partially why tort reform was such a big priority in the most recent Legislative Session.

The state, in short, crushes all comers in this area.

For starters, the report, analyzing 12 months of lawsuits filed through March 31, found that per 100,000 Floridians, there were 127.41 personal injury cases in court. “This is a staggering 1,237% over the national average rate of just 9.53, and 319% more than any other state on the list,” states the report.

In addition, personal injury cases in the Sunshine State amount to more than 60% of all civil cases in court — 433% more than the national average proportion of 11.65%. Such cases do not exceed 45% of the total civil caseload anywhere else in the country, the report found. Ohio, New Jersey and South Carolina, all with similar rates of personal injury per capita, follow Florida.

In what to some could be an ironic twist, the research for the report comes from Florida personal injury law firm Anidjar & Levine. The firm, with seven offices in Florida, according to its website, including Tampa, Naples and Fort Myers, analyzed the data to reveal “the states where the public is most likely to carry out legal action following an incident.”

Personal Injury lawsuits, March 2022-March 2023
StatePersonal injury cases PI cases as % of totalPI cases per 100,000 capita
Florida28,342
62.10%127.41
Ohio3,57244.28%30.38
New Jersey2,81031.03%
30.34
South Carolina
1,59636.03%
30.21
Illinois 2,88723.61%
22.95
Louisiana 7676.16%16.71
Minnesota 90128.11%15.76
Indiana 97016.91%14.20
Georgia 1,52018.58%
13.93
New Hampshire19033.69%13.62
Source: Anidjar & Levine

For personal injury lawyers, that’s a business opportunity. But for the state legislators who pushed for tort reform, the study is validation of their efforts.

Marc Anidjar, managing partner of Anidjar & Levine since it was founded in 2006, couldn’t be reached for comment. Supporters of tort reform had plenty to say when Gov. DeSantis signed the legislation March 24. The bill modifies “bad faith framework, eliminates one way attorney’s fees and fee multipliers and ensures Floridians can’t be held liable for damages if the person suing is more at fault,” says a statement from the governor’s office. It also provides uniform standards for juries in calculating medical damages and reduces the statute of limitations for general negligence cases from four years to two years.

“Florida has been considered a judicial hellhole for far too long and we are desperately in need of legal reform that brings us more in line with the rest of the country,” DeSantis says in the statement. 

“When a horrible accident or incident occurs and people suffer a loss, they should be compensated quickly and fairly,” adds State Sen. President Kathleen Passidomo, R-Naples, in the statement.  “The vast majority of attorneys work very hard to provide sound legal representation for Floridians in these difficult circumstances. Unfortunately, there are a few bad actors who are in the business to draw out civil cases as long as possible, collecting more and more fees from insurance companies. 

 

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Mark Gordon

Mark Gordon is the managing editor of the Business Observer. He has worked for the Business Observer since 2005. He previously worked for newspapers and magazines in upstate New York, suburban Philadelphia and Jacksonville.

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