Report highlights the negative effect of current legal landscape on citizens’ pocketbooks
Baton Rouge, La. (May 11, 2020) – The Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC) today released a report that examines Louisiana’s current legal system, and notes rules that make the state an outlier nationally at the financial expense of its citizens. The full report is attached and available online at brac.org/ppc.
The report analyzes the ways in which the state’s legal system is different than all others in the nation, and how these deviations are related to Louisiana’s average car insurance rates, which are now the highest in the country. These oddities are also the reason that Louisiana consistently ranks among the worst states in the country regarding legal climate by national publications. Analysis shows that without meaningful reform, these rules cost the state of Louisiana 20,000 jobs, including 3,000 in the Capital Region.
“In what is the worst economic situation of our lifetime, we cannot afford to keep in place policies that put unnecessary costs on small businesses and people across Louisiana,” said Flynn Foster, chairman of the Baton Rouge Area Chamber Board of Directors and CEO of Guaranty Media. “Now is the time to lower insurance rates and other costs of doing business, so that we can spur economic recovery and recreate the jobs our community has lost.”
Key takeaways from BRAC’s report are:
- The average auto insurance rate in Baton Rouge is $2,800 annually, almost double the national average of $1,500;
- Louisiana ranks the second worst legal climate in the nation by the Institute for Legal Reform, and fourth worst in the American Tort Reform Foundation’s “Judicial Hellhole” ranking;
- The annual negative economic impact on the Capital Region of these legal rarities is $206 million, 3,000 jobs, and $171 million in lost personal income;
- For the state overall, these rules have a negative impact of $1.4 billion and nearly 20,000 jobs; and
- Louisiana’s $50,000 civil jury trial threshold is not only the highest in the nation, it is the highest by far. The second highest threshold among states is $15,000 and 36 states require no dollar threshold at all.
About the Baton Rouge Area Chamber
The Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC) leads economic development in the nine-parish Baton Rouge Area, working to grow jobs and wealth and to improve the business climate and competitiveness in the region. Today, BRAC investors include more than 1,500 small businesses, mid-sized firms, large industry and entrepreneurial startups, as well as individuals and organizations that support business and economic development. In this capacity, BRAC serves as the voice of the business community, providing knowledge, access, services and advocacy. More information is available at brac.org.
Morgan is the Marketing Manager for the Baton Rouge Area Chamber. In her role, she manages writing organizational publications and materials, oversees BRAC’s social media and blog, and coordinates timelines for all internal marketing projects.