What Is Issue 1?
This measure was referred to the ballot by a vote of the state legislature as “Senate Joint Resolution 8” and will appear on the November 2018 General Election ballot. This amendment would limit the amount of money awarded in lawsuits for personal injury or wrongful death to a maximum of $500,000, regardless of the negligence and wrongful acts involved.
Why It’s Wrong
The current system is in place to hold hospitals, mega corporations, and anyone else with deep pockets accountable, should they act in ways that will injure or kill someone.
The Declaration of Rights of the State of Arkansas would be amended by this ballot measure to undermine one of the most fundamental rights our state has always guaranteed its clients – right to trial by a jury unencumbered by arbitrary conditions or limits. Don’t let anyone fool you, this will erase your constitutional rights.
Specifically, Article 2 Section 7 states "The right of trial by jury shall remain inviolate, and shall extend to all cases at law, without regard to the amount in controversy..." Don’t let anyone fool you. This amendment violates that right, “inviolate” means "consecrated, free from impairment." To claim SJR8 does not “impair" the right to trial by jury is nonsense.
Article 5 Section 32 states that, "Provided, that otherwise no law shall be enacted limiting the amount to be recovered for injuries resulting in death or for injuries to persons or property; and in case of death from such injuries the right of action shall survive, ..." SJR8 clearly violates the provisions of this Article and Section.
Article 2 Section 13 states, "Every person is entitled to a certain remedy in the laws for all injuries or wrongs he may receive in his person, property or character; he ought to obtain justice freely, and without purchase; completely, and without denial; promptly and without delay; conformably to the laws." SJR8 certainly limits the right to "obtain justice freely and without purchase; completely and without denial."
This measure is an attempt by big government and special interests to take away your inherent rights as a citizen of this state. It takes away your right to trial by a jury unencumbered by arbitrary restrictions, as guaranteed by the Arkansas State Constitution. To learn more, visit the Protect AR Families website.