November 4th, 2013
What Really Happens in Lawsuits Before Juries? Jim Bordas Highlights Independent Medical Exams and other Information
Many of our readers may have an interest in what really happens in lawsuits
before juries and some of the things juries are not told by the courts and lawyers because they are prohibited at trial from doing so. Along these lines is an editorial printed in the Charleston Gazette written by Robert Angelone, an economist from New Jersey, who tries to clean up some of the "unknown." Our firm has linked to this story for your viewing. We hope you enjoy it.
If you do not have time to read the entire article, I will provide you with some highlights. First, people who are injured and file lawsuits are almost always required by the courts to undergo so-called "independent medical exams." These exams are bought and paid for by the insurance industry with the insurance industry usually using the go-to industry doctors. They don't treat patients. They conduct exams and write reports that are almost always favorable to the defense. These doctors are almost always paid thousands of dollars for a single 15-minute exam and report. The real purpose in obtaining and hiring these doctors and putting the reports in evidence or calling the doctors is to limit the amount of damages or the amount of recovery that the injured party may receive from a fair jury.
Next, one of the items that the article didn't mention is the fact that oftentimes
the defendant who is sitting with counsel in a case brought by an injured victim of a negligent automobile driver has already settled with the plaintiff. The plaintiff is then bringing a suit solely against his own automobile insurance carrier. The unfortunate thing is that juries are not allowed to be told the true nature of the case because of the way the state legislature has structured that part of the law. That is, the injured party sits in the chair with the defense attorney acting as if his estate and his assets are at risk when in fact he has already settled. The insurance company's money is on the line, not the defendant's.
Some people, including many of our lawyers, feel that that is a fraud on the court and a fraud on the jury and should be stopped.