The U.S. House Judiciary Committee approved a SEMA-supported bill that would require federal judges to impose monetary sanctions against lawyers who file frivolous lawsuits. Under current law, federal judges are allowed, but not required, to impose penalties. The “Lawsuit Abuse Reduction Act” (LARA) would also eliminate a provision in current law that allows lawyers to avoid penalties by withdrawing frivolous claims after sanction proceedings have begun. Courts could also award the prevailing parties reasonable expenses and attorney's fees in defending against a frivolous lawsuit. Similar legislation has been introduced in the last decade, most recently in 2005, when the House passed a bill but it failed in the Senate. This year’s bill has been sent to the House floor for further consideration.
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