Corlew Discusses Focus on Legal Reform in Missouri General Assembly

Shook, Hardy & Bacon Of Counsel Kevin Corlew speaks with the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry for an article, “Rep. Kevin Corlew: A Leader in Litigation Reform,” about his role as a State Representative in the Missouri General Assembly. Recognizing the unequal playing field in Missouri’s treatment of businesses in courts, the article highlights Rep. Corlew’s emphasis on legal reform, including a focus on expert witnesses, arbitration agreements and the collateral source rule.

"When businesses come into court, they are not on an even playing field,” Corlew said. “There are standards stacked against them. There are procedural rules stacked against them.”

Rep. Corlew is addressing the problem of faulty expert witnesses who espouse junk science by sponsoring House Bill 1676, which proposes adopting the Daubert standard in Missouri State Courts. Already used in all federal courts and two-thirds of state courts, Rep. Corlew explains this standard will provide guidelines for trial judges to determine the authenticity of expert witnesses and assess whether the testimony provided is based on reliable facts and data relevant to the case.

Rep. Corlew is also sponsoring House Bill 1718, which supports the enforcement of arbitration agreements in Missouri. Seeing arbitration as a fair and efficient process to resolve business disputes, Rep. Corlew underscores the importance of this reform as a means to help save both money and time for all parties involved by avoiding a court trial.

Additionally, Rep. Corlew is spearheading efforts to pass a common-sense measure that clarifies the amount of money an injured person can recover for his or her medical treatment. The current rule, known as collateral source, bars the admissibility of trial evidence that could indicate whether a plaintiff has already been compensated for his injuries. Rep. Corlew explains that the reformed rule would ensure the plaintiff is not filing unnecessary lawsuits to be compensated for injuries that may already be covered by other sources such as insurance companies.