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Committee to Vote Friday on Stricter Rules for Civil Liability Suits

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MADISON, Wis. (WTAQ) - The state Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to vote Friday on tighter standards for civil liability lawsuits in Wisconsin.

It’s the most controversial item in Republican Governor Scott Walker’s economic agenda.

The bill would make it harder for plaintiffs to prove they were injured by goods and services and collect punitive damages. It would also ban liability for products more than 25 years old – and it would be easier to sanction those who file frivolous lawsuits.

Businesses say liability suits are among their biggest worries, and Wisconsin’s awards are often more liberal than in other states.

But trial lawyers and other opponents say it would be harder to win fair compensation for injuries.

Walker says his bill would not stop victims from being compensated fairly – and he says attorneys have the most to lose, since they get a large cut of damage awards.

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