The following email was sent to all AIF members on March 17, 2023.


We are pleased to inform our members that HB 837 relating to Civil Remedies has passed the House today by a vote of 80 yeas and 31 nays.  This is a huge step closer to a more balanced and fair judicial system for Florida’s employers.  (See the synopsis of this bill below.)
As outlined in our 2023 Session Priorities publication, tort reform is the top priority for AIF, AIF members, and all of our partners in the business community.  As it stands today, our current legal system fills the pockets of trial lawyers while damaging Florida businesses, regardless of size, location or industry, and has been a burden to employers for many years.  HB 837 makes significant reforms that will restore balance and fairness to Florida’s civil justice system.
AIF took the lead on this issue by hosting the Florida Business Forum in February 2023.  The Forum, along with more than 30 business partner groups, industry experts and corporate leaders, identified exactly which areas in our tort law needed reform.
AIF applauds Speaker Paul Renner (R-Palm Coast) for his leadership and bill sponsors Representatives Tommy Gregory (R-Lakewood Ranch) and Tom Fabricio (R-Miami Lakes) for their steadfast efforts to shepherd HB 837 through to passage in the House of Representatives.
Senate Bill 236, sponsored by Senator Travis Hutson (R-Palm Coast), is the Senate companion to HB 837 under the leadership of Senate President Kathleen Passidomo (R-Naples) and is poised to be heard on the Senate floor as soon as next Wednesday.
As tort reform has taken center stage this legislative session, AIF has provided additional support through messaging via TV, radio, billboards, and digital ads.  You can follow our efforts in the fight for a fair judicial system on the AIF website at where you can view our position statements, video from the Florida Business Forum, and our current TV and radio ads. 
AIF and our full advocacy team is leading the battle every day in the state capitol to ensure that your company will have a fighting chance in the court system. Please reach out to me if we can be of further service to you and your company.



On Friday, March 17, HB 837 was introduced for final passage on the House floor and reported favorably with 80 yeas and 31 nays.

HB 837 seeks to eliminate the cottage industry of trial lawyers and frivolous legal artists undermining the integrity of our civil justice system in Florida. The bill addresses current loopholes in our laws and court procedures that keep their cottage industry alive by addressing seven main issues:

  • Transparency in Damages: It will institute true transparency in damages so that juries base damages awards on the true cost of medical treatment instead of inflated bills.
  • Third-Party Bad Faith: It encourages settlements and discourages litigation by requiring third parties to cooperate in good faith and allowing insurers to pay the lesser of policy limits or the demand within 120 days after receiving actual notice of a claim accompanied by sufficient evidence. It also reverses Florida Supreme Court rulings that have led to ordinary negligence being deemed as bad faith.
  • Modified Comparative Liability: It promotes personal responsibility by stating that a party that is more than 50 percent at fault for their own injuries may not recover damages from other minimally-at-fault parties, but exempts medical malpractice claims from this new threshold.
  • Contingency Risk Multiplier: In 2017, the Florida Supreme Court rejected the federal standard that attorney fee multipliers should only be applied in “rare and exceptional” circumstances, ruling instead that multipliers could be applied in almost any case. This bill restores the award of contingency risk multipliers to only rare and exceptional circumstances for all litigation.
  • One-Way Attorney Fees: The bill reverses the system that incentivizes attorneys to bring frivolous lawsuits by limiting the recovery of one-way fees to only declaratory judgment actions seeking a determination of coverage against an insurer which denied coverage.
  • Statute of Limitations: It will reduce the statute of limitations for negligence cases from four years to two years.
  • Premises Liability: The bill states that in a lawsuit against a property owner for “negligent security,” a jury may consider the fault of the person who actually committed the underlying criminal act.  It also provides liability protection for multifamily residential properties that implement specific security requirements.

HB 837 waits Senate approval before heading to the Governor. The Senate is expected to consider SB 236, the companion to HB 837 next Wednesday.


For more information about AIF and its position on tort reform legislation, please contact Adam Basford, Vice President - Governmental Affairs, at (850) 224-7173 or email him at