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  1. #1

    Default Should You Disclose Your Insurance Policy Limits to the Plaintiff's Lawyer

    My question involves an injury that occurred in the state of: California

    Other party send me a request to find out my insurance limit. Is it better to sign saying itís ok for my insurance to disclose or not?

    A while ago, heavy traffic, speed was about 30 mph at night on freeway. Biker was going about 70 mph between lanes. There was a gap and I moved over to avoid something tossed out by driver in front and moved back into my lane, only about 2 ft of my car went over to the other lane. Biker rear ends me at 75mph and HAD NO INSURANCE. Police Cited him for no insurance and an interview with police and a recorded 2nd interview w my insurance, biker stated that he was going 70 mph, splitting lanes, and traffic was 30 mph when he rear ended my car. Biker broke his wrist and damaged his bike.

    My insurance accepted 20% fault. Biker hired an attorney and suing my insurance for about $400k, but will settle for the insurance max and believes Iím 60% or greater at fault. Claiming biker has pain and suffering and lost wages due to a broken wrist. Biker is a bar tender and claims he canít work and was send text messages to me cussing and swearing about how I ruined his life and so on. I notified my insurance and attorneys contacted his attorney and told him to stop with harassment text messages. Now attorney wants me to disclose my insurance payout. I have full coverage and attorneys at my insurance is handling it. I never spoke with attorneys only the claims guy that relays information.

    I donít know if itís a good idea to disclose or not or it doesnít matter?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Should I Disclose My Insurance Payout to Other Attorney. Biker Had No Insurance

    Quote Quoting undercrash
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    I don’t know if it’s a good idea to disclose or not or it doesn’t matter?
    It's usually routine for opposing party to confirm your liability limits.

    Refer your request to your own claims guy who will have the company attorney handle it. You should not be responding to anything from the claimant.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Should I Disclose My Insurance Payout to Other Attorney. Biker Had No Insurance

    Quote Quoting undercrash
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    Now attorney wants me to disclose my insurance payout.
    Who is this attorney? The motorcyclists attorney?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Should I Disclose My Insurance Payout to Other Attorney. Biker Had No Insurance

    If the other party to a lawsuit served you with an interrogatory (likely form interrogatory 4.1), you don't get a choice.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Should I Disclose My Insurance Payout to Other Attorney. Biker Had No Insurance

    ok thanks, I don't remember the attorney. My insurance company pretty much does everything, just calls to notify me of what's going on a few times. Ok thanks, I'll sign the stuff to disclose my insurance max.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Should I Disclose My Insurance Payout to Other Attorney. Biker Had No Insurance

    California requires the insurance company to ask you for permission. There's no obligation (in California, but such is not true in other states) for them to disclose to the other party pre-trial what the limits are, although it is sometimes advantageous to do so. If the insurer thinks it's advantageous, do it, otherwise don't.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Should I Disclose My Insurance Payout to Other Attorney. Biker Had No Insurance

    Quote Quoting undercrash
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    ok thanks, I don't remember the attorney. My insurance company pretty much does everything, just calls to notify me of what's going on a few times. Ok thanks, I'll sign the stuff to disclose my insurance max.
    You should ask your insurance company before you do anything. They are representing you.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Should I Disclose My Insurance Payout to Other Attorney. Biker Had No Insurance

    Quote Quoting undercrash
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    ok thanks, I don't remember the attorney. My insurance company pretty much does everything, just calls to notify me of what's going on a few times. Ok thanks, I'll sign the stuff to disclose my insurance max.
    Call your claim rep and forward the papers to him/her.

    You're represented. The other guy's attorney has no business sending anything directly to you.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Should I Disclose My Insurance Payout to Other Attorney. Biker Had No Insurance

    A couple of further comments.

    Your insurance company is not representing you. Your insurer owes you multiple duties, two of which are the duty to indemnify you against any judgment entered against you for a covered act, subject to the limits of your policy and the duty to defend you in any litigation arising out of an act for which the potential for coverage exists. Based on what you've posted here, it sounds like your insurer, in furtherance of its duty to defend, has hired a lawyer to represent you. Despite the fact that the insurance company is paying the bill, that lawyer is your lawyer; he/she represents you and owes you almost all of the same duties that would be owed if you had hired the lawyer yourself (the most significant difference is that, in the case of an auto liability case, the insurer can dictate the terms of any settlement within policy limits, even if you object). While you certainly can communicate directly with your insurer, any issues relating to the litigation should be discussed between you and the lawyer.

    Second, as I said before, if the plaintiff served you with an interrogatory (likely form interrogatory 4.1), you don't get a choice and must disclose your policy limits (and other information). If you fail to do that, the plaintiff can make a motion to compel, and the court will order you to comply (and probably will impose monetary sanctions for failing to comply). That being the case, "flyingron's" comment about a the lack of a duty "to disclose to the other party pre-trial what the limits are" is incorrect. There is no duty to disclose limits outside of the litigation context (although an insurer's refusal to do so could give rise to a bad faith claim by the policy holder), but since your situation is apparently in litigation, that's an irrelevant point (as is the regulation that requires the insurer to obtain permission from the insured for the disclosure).

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Should You Disclose Your Insurance Policy Limits to the Plaintiff's Lawyer

    Quote Quoting undercrash
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    Biker rear ends me at 75mph and HAD NO INSURANCE. Police Cited him for no insurance...

    My insurance accepted 20% fault. Biker hired an attorney and suing my insurance for about $400k, but will settle for the insurance max and believes I’m 60% or greater at fault. Claiming biker has pain and suffering and lost wages due to a broken wrist.
    I thought in CA if you did not have insurance then you could not sue for pain and suffering?

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