CHARLESTON – As the Independent Commission on Judicial Reform wraps up its statewide meetings, House Speaker Rick Thompson commended the group for choosing to listen to testimony regarding the benefits of creating a business court system -– a proposal he long has advocated.

"Through my own research regarding business, or 'chancery,' courts in other states, particularly Delaware, I have learned that by creating a separate system for business disputes, a state can make its entire judicial system more efficient," Thompson said. "I am certain that the Commission's research will yield the same findings."

During the 2008 legislative session, Thompson introduced House Concurrent Resolution 20, which called for a study of courts of chancery.

"I have said time and again that a separate business court system could help expedite the flow of court cases in West Virginia, which in turn would foster a better business climate, " Thompson, D-Wayne, said. "That could provide a major incentive for new businesses to come to our state."

He has noted that several states have established such systems by legislation, by rule, or by means of a pilot program, and many states are either working to establish or are studying the feasibility of establishing a court of chancery. Such a move could necessitate changes to the state's statute or the state Constitution.

"There are many options to consider, and I'm thankful that they are being discussed by the Commission and others within the judicial system," Thompson said.

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