U.S. Chamber: NBC 'Today' Show Segment on Candy Class Actions Shows Need for Reforms

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Lawyers Reap Big Pay Days, Not Consumers

February 22, 2017

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Lisa A. Rickard, president of the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform (ILR), made the following statement about a segment that aired on NBC’s “Today” show about “slack fill” class action lawsuits, and a related report released today by ILR:

“NBC’s Today show segment this morning on so-called slack fill lawsuits against candy makers misses the point: These cases are about lawyers making money, not consumers.

“In these kinds of cases, lawyers make millions while only a very small percentage of consumers will see any money.

New research released by the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform today shows the explosion in the number of food lawsuits over the past few years where the number of cases has ballooned from 20 in 2008 to over 170 new food class actions filed in or removed to federal court in 2016. Among many examples, the report details questionable lawsuits like the one against Starbucks for putting too much ice into its iced coffee.

“NBC’s segment is further proof of the need for class action litigation reform now headed to the floor of the U.S. House. Class action lawsuits should pay consumers first, not the lawyers. If the feeding frenzy on food marketing class actions continues, consumers will pay the price – including higher costs for candy at the movies.”

ILR seeks to promote civil justice reform through legislative, political, judicial, and educational activities at the national, state, and local levels.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations.