Senate Bill 88, now a bill in the Indiana General Assembly, if passed, would require all losing litigants, in any type of civil case—divorce, personal injury, contract, landlord tenant and all other civil cases to pay attorney fees to the winning party. If passed, this bill could have a devastating affect on the ability of less financially sound individuals to pursue litigation. Think about it: if you want to file a lawsuit due to a car wreck and the jury rules against you, not only do you lose, but you get a large bill for the opposing counsel’s attorney fees.
If your employer denies your workers’ comp claim, you fight it and lose, you will be required to pay your employer’s attorney fees.
If you have a child custody matter and lose—the same result. If you want to sue your landlord because he failed to repair faulty pipes, and lose, you owe his attorney fees. This bill would have a disastrous effect on the “little guy” who’s less able to afford attorney fees. The fear of being stuck with a large bill to your opponent’s attorney would have a significant “chilling effect” and deter the poor and middle class from pursuing a remedy for a civil wrong. Tell your State Representative to help defeat this bill.