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Gov. Rod Blagojevich on Friday signed a bill barring people from filing lawsuits claiming a restaurant caused weight gain, obesity or other health problems.

Illinois joins 11 other states to enact such laws, 10 of which have been signed since March, according to the National Restaurant Association. Louisiana led the way by enacting a "frivolous-lawsuit" law last summer.

Blagojevich said signing the "Illinois Common Sense Consumption Act" promotes personal responsibility.

"Obesity is a serious problem in Illinois," Blagojevich said in a prepared statement. "But blaming a restaurant for weight gain is not the answer."

A federal judge in New York last year dismissed two lawsuits alleging Oak Brook-based McDonald's Corp. had caused obesity and related health problems in thousands of children. The judge said the law shouldn't try to protect people from their own excesses and 카지노사이트 that other factors besides fast food could have caused failing health.

"We must put the focus on healthier lifestyles and nutritional balance instead of costly lawsuits and litigation that only serve to clog up our courts and drive up the cost of a meal," said the bill's sponsor, Sen. John Cullerton, D-Chicago.

The federal government estimates 6 percent of Illinois residents and nearly 8 percent of Medicare recipients are obese, according to the governor's office.

Similar measures still are pending in six states, according to the restaurant association, but nine other states considered legislation this year but killed it.

The U.S. House also passed a similar law in March.
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