UK consumers reject US-style legal reforms

By James Barnes

15 May 2013 at 11:12 BST

Consumers of legal services in the UK disagree with Government plans to introduce US-style collective action lawsuits, a study by the US Chamber Institute for Legal Reform (ILR) has found.

UK consumers not keen on US-style reform

According to the ILR report, 57 per cent of UK consumers surveyed opposed the reforms.
The ILR survey, fielded by Ipsos MORI, revealed skepticism to the plans announced in last week’s Queen’s Speech to introduce the draft Consumer Rights Bill - a key piece of legislation that is likely to fundamentally change the face of UK litigation.

Burgeoning market

The Bill will enable opt-out collective actions where breaches of consumer or competition law are said to have taken place.
‘The introduction of opt-out class actions in the UK could open the floodgates to US-style collective action law suits, and the possibility of a burgeoning market in spurious litigation in Britain, driven by a fast-expanding legal sector allied to a litigation funding industry that is reaching maturity,’ said Lisa Rickard, president of the ILR.


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