U.S. Energy and Environmental Interest Groups: Institutional Profiles

By Lettie McSpadden Wenner | Go to book overview

T

TECHNICAL INFORMATION PROJECT

See Resource Policy Institute.


TRIAL LAWYERS FOR PUBLIC JUSTICE (TLPJ)

2000 P Street, N.W., Suite 611 Washington, D.C. 20036


ORGANIZATION AND RESOURCES

In 1982, a group of trial lawyers, those who litigate for plaintiffs involved in personal injury law suits, banded together to form the Trial Lawyers for Public Justice (TLPJ). They included such consumer advocates as Ralph Nader and Joan Claybrook of Public Citizen, as well as famous personal injury lawyers such as Phil Corboy of Chicago. TLPJ merged the legal talents of some prominent trial lawyers with the goals of some public interest organizations, such as the Environmental Defense Fund* and the Natural Resources Defense Council.* It is dedicated to recovering monetary damages from both business and government for individual victims of misconduct.

In the late 1980s TLPJ had about 500 members, both firms and individual trial lawyers. Individual sponsoring attorneys pay $1,000 a year to belong, although law students and attorneys in practice fewer than five years can pay only $100 a year. Patrons pay $10,000 or more and include foundations such as McIntosh, Rockefeller, and Playboy, as well as individual attorneys. Lifetime members pay $5,000. One goal of the organization is to become self-supporting with lawyers' fees recovered in litigation covering all its costs, as well as being able to make donations to other public-interest law firms.

Revenues are nearly $200,000 yearly, 80 percent of which comes from membership dues, and 8 percent from grants and contributions and from attorneys'

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