Louisiana’s lawsuit climate ranked second-worst in the country, according to a survey released Monday by the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform.

This is the third consecutive year Louisiana ranked No. 49. The survey has been around since 2002, and Louisiana has never ranked higher than No. 47.

“As our economic downturn has continued, a growing percentage of business leaders have identified a state’s lawsuit climate as a significant factor in determining their growth and expansion plans, and the jobs that come along with them,” Lisa A. Rickard, president of the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform, said in a news release. “That makes the consequences of this survey even more significant to the economic growth of Louisiana.”

According to the study, “Creating Conditions for Economic Growth: The Role of the Legal Environment,” completed for ILR by NERA Economic Consulting in 2011, Louisiana could save up to $1.1 billion in tort costs and increase employment between 1.03 percent to 2.79 percent by improving its legal environment.