RESOLUTION OPPOSING SENATE BILL 406, PRINTER'S NO. 1632

WHEREAS, the stated purpose of SB 406 is to reduce frivolous litigation;

WHEREAS, the Philadelphia Bar Association has numerous serious concerns regarding the provisions of SB 406 as presently drafted, including but not limited to the following:

* Contrary to its stated objective, SB 406 will significantly increase the amount and cost of litigation in the courts of the Commonwealth and promote the misuse and abuse of civil proceedings through the strategic use and outright abuse of this new cause of action;

* By allowing parties to litigate simultaneously the original action and the new cause of action for frivolous litigation, SB 406 will create substantial conflicts of interest between the litigants and their counsel, jeopardize the attorney-client privilege and a client's interest in preserving confidential communications with his or her attorney, and otherwise cause unnecessary ethical problems for counsel in the course of representing their clients;

* Critical provisions of SB 406 lack adequate definitions, raising potential procedural and substantive due process issues;

* The proposed bill is unnecessary given existing statutory and procedural safeguards and remedies, several of which are recognized in the bill itself; and

WHEREAS, the Philadelphia Bar Association has grave concern that SB 406, if enacted in its present form, will not accomplish its stated purpose and will instead severely and adversely impact the administration of justice;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Philadelphia Bar Association opposes Senate Bill 406, Printer's No. 1632 in its present form; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Philadelphia Bar Association directs its Chancellor or his designee(s) to bring this Resolution to the attention of the General Assembly, to oppose the same or similar legislation, and to assist the General Assembly in resolving the expressed concerns of the Association before enacting any legislation which addresses the issue of frivolous litigation.

PHILADELPHIA BAR ASSOCIATION
BOARD OF GOVERNORS
ADOPTED: December 20, 2001