While the states play an important role in our country’s legal system, the U.S. Constitution grants the federal government limited but essential authority to preempt certain state laws. This federal preemption benefits the U.S. economy by reducing lawsuit abuse, ensuring strong, uniform health and safety standards, as well as providing a consistent and fair legal climate for businesses across the United States. Read More...

Eliminating preemption would impede a free, nationwide market for goods and services. This was one of the major goals of the Founding Fathers when they adopted the U.S. Constitution, which explicitly allows Congress to regulate commerce “among the several states.” When businesses are subjected to confusing and inconsistent state and federal laws, plaintiffs’ lawyers are able to exploit inconsistent standards to bring cases in lawsuit-friendly states.

For example, the the Supreme Court issued a favorable, unanimous decision in 2019 that conveys how judges, rather than juries, must decide whether federal prescription-drug regulations preempt state failure-to-warn claims because the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) would reject the plaintiff’s proposed warning. Congress passing legislation that will promote federal preemption in areas such as food and drug safety, auto safety, and financial regulations is the first step in providing a reliable and just legal climate for businesses.


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All Results for Preemption

  1. Constitutional Constraints: Provisions Limiting Excessive Government Fines

    October 27, 2015 | Research

    This paper outlines the constitutional constraints that limit excessive and duplicative government fines and penalties, including the Excessive Fines Clause and Due Process Clause.... Read More

  2. FDA's Generic Drug Proposal Should Have Consumers Feeling Ill

    April 28, 2015 | News and Blog

    Just like a bad cold that you can't quite kick, the FDA's proposal to abandon its requirement for generic drugs to carry the same warning labels as their brand-name counterparts is back. And, it should have you feeling ill. ... Read More

  3. WATCH: Washington Legal Foundation Briefing on Lawsuit-Generating FDA Generics Labeling Proposal

    April 11, 2014 | News and Blog

    The Washington Legal Foundation, in cooperation with the Generic Pharmaceutical Association and the American Enterprise Institute, held a media briefing to discuss the consequences of the FDA's proposed generic labeling requirement. ... Read More

  4. New Study Confirms: FDA Rule Would Create a Costly Lawsuit Machine

    February 05, 2014 | News and Blog

    A proposed FDA rule regarding generic pharmaceuticals would lead to costly lawsuits, according to a new study released today Matrix Global Advisors.... Read More

  5. In the News Today - January 27, 2014

    January 27, 2014 | News and Blog

    Shareholders filed 238 federal securities lawsuits against American companies in 2013, the most since 2008.... Read More

  6. In the News Today - December 4, 2013

    December 04, 2013 | News and Blog

    An appeals court has overturned a National Labor Relations Board decision that prevented employers from including arbitration agreements in employee contracts.... Read More

  7. A Proposal for Higher Costs & More Lawsuits

    November 11, 2013 | News and Blog

    On Friday, the Food and Drug Administration released a draft regulation that would allow generic drug makers to change warning labels on their products.... Read More

  8. In the News Today - October 29, 2013

    October 29, 2013 | News and Blog

    The legal tab for U.S. banks is expected to rise to $107 billion or more in the coming years.... Read More

  9. Legal Reform, The Framers and First Principles

    October 23, 2013 | Research

    Written by former U.S. Solicitor General Paul Clement, now with Bancroft, this study lays out the constitutional powers of the states to enact legal reforms.... Read More

  10. An Rx for Mega Lawsuits?

    September 20, 2013 | News and Blog

    Generic consumer products first appeared on store shelves in the late 1970s as a cost-conscious alternative to brand name grocery products. Today, one can buy practically anything in generic form - from tires to whiskey.... Read More