Almost always,

defendants will have insurance that covers payment when a jury decides the defendants owe the plaintiff.

When a plaintiff proves her case and the jury decides that the defendant owes the plaintiff money, there is almost always an insurance company that steps in and pays on the defendant’s behalf. Most people who drive have car insurance. If you look at your car insurance policy, it shows you how much you pay the insurance company so that it will pay a plaintiff if you hurt someone in a car crash. Sometimes a person will have up to $1,000,000 in car insurance coverage. Often times, a business will have at least $1,000,000 in car insurance coverage. That means that the defendant does not have to pay out of pocket, but the insurance company covers the amount the jury says the defendant owes the plaintiff.

 

Of course, that is a completely fair result, too. Why do folks pay money in premiums to an insurance company other than to have insurance coverage to protect their home and personal assets while at the same time making sure that the plaintiff they hurt recovers what she is owed? If the insurance company had agreed to pay a fair amount early on, there would not be any lawyers or lawsuits. You never see or hear about those matters because they go away before there is any need to hear about them. Unfortunately, insurance companies tend to hold on to the money they get from people who pay premiums for coverage for as long as they can. The insurance companies refuse to do the right thing. The insurance companies refuse to pay injured plaintiffs what justice demands they deserve. This creates a burdensome lawsuit for both the plaintiff and defendant. You can blame the insurance companies for lawsuits. In almost every situation, the defendant wants to do the right thing and pay the plaintiff what he owes her, which is exactly what should happen. But the insurance companies refuse to do the simple, proper thing because they want to make more money.

 

Just like you have car insurance, almost every doctor and hospital have medical malpractice insurance. So if a jury agrees with a plaintiff in a medical malpractice case that the doctor or hospital owes $1,000,000.00, or $2,000,000.00, or even $10,000,000 to make the plaintiff they hurt whole, that doctor’s medical malpractice insurance company will pay what the doctor owes. So the insurance company will pay the $10,000,000.00 to the plaintiff on behalf of the doctor or hospital, and it does not come out of the doctor or hospital’s pocket. Similarly, when a defendant property owner owes money for injuring a plaintiff in a premises liability case, the property owner will almost always have insurance that covers the property. That means that if, at the end of trial, a jury decides that a plaintiff deserves $2,000,000.00 in a premises liability case against a big store, the store’s insurance company will pay $2,000,000.00 to the plaintiff.

Ben Van Steinburgh

Author Ben Van Steinburgh

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