08192017Headline:

Vancouver, Washington

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Don Jacobs
Don Jacobs
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Auto accidents and insurance companies

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Although there are exceptions, most people who cause an accident feel pretty bad about it.  They typically express remorse at the scene.  Many even call up the person they hurt sometime later to see how they’re doing.  Most think their insurance will take good care of the person.  Of course, once they turn it over to their company, they hear very little if anything about how the injured person was treated.   I’ve often thought it’d be interesting to send a survey to every injured person after a case settles to see how they felt treated by the other driver’s insurance company.   I doubt there’d be many positive responses.  This explains the reason many consumers are surprised when told we have to file a lawsuit against the other driver if the case can’t be settled.  They don’t want to sue the other driver.  Their dispute isn’t with them; it’s with their insurance company.  They are even more surprised when told we can’t even mention the other driver has insurance or how they were treated when we get to court.  This rule makes many jurors reluctant to award damages.  If they aren’t sure whether or not the driver had insurance they don’t like the prospect of bankrupting someone.  They reason if the driver doesn’t have much it doesn’t make much sense to award much of a judgment against them.  Which means the insurance company stands to pay out a lot less than if the jury knew the person was insured.  Now who do you suppose created this rule?