Devaluing Your California Personal Injury Case

The defense insurance company will do everything in their power to devalue your case. The use of Deception will be utilized by them. Sometimes a claims adjuster will not add a "value driver" in your evaluation pre-lawsuit, and feign an offer to settle by offering a low ball offer to you. For example, you have an AMA impairment rating from one of your doctors, but the adjuster does not consider that impairment in their analysis. This is just one example on how deception is used pre-lawsuit in a California personal injury case.

The use of Deception is actually more common with defense lawyers, particualarly right before trial and during trial. The insurance company will hire a defense doctor (their hired gun) to try to say you were not that injured. They will use medical terms in there argument to try and confuse the matter. This too is a form of Deception. 

Stipulating to Liability

Another common form of Deception is done on the eve of trial, and that is when the defense will "stipulate to liability (fault);" this is a fancy way of saying they will agree that their insured was at-fault for your client's injuries. They will offer this as angreement before the judge, so they can say both sides have agreed to this. Even though it sounds find, it is a trap. How so? Well, the defense is trying to show to the jury that they are sorry, and that both sides have agreed to this finding of fault. So, if they can get your lawyer to agree with this (stipulate), they can object later when your San Diego personal injury lawyer wants to talk about what happened (the injury producing event).

So, "stipulating to liability" is a deceptive way the defense will try to get the jury to never hear about what happened to you. They don't want your lawyer to talk to them about how the defendant chose to break a safety rule or rules that caused you harm. It takes away an important foundation for the jury to consider when evaluating your injury case. It is what I call "fake repetence" because they are only saying they are at fault. They are not apologizing, nor making it right (paying up the true value). They also do not want to focus on the wrongful conduct. These are value drivers the jury needs to hear about in order to come up with a just verdict of damages.

I Never Stipulate (Agree) to Liability (Fault) With the Defense:

Thus, I NEVER stipulate to fault with the defense. I tell the judge they can agree that they are at fault, but they certainly do not need me to stipulate (or agree) to them on that standard so they can object later when testimony goes into how the injury producing event occurred to my client. Make no mistake, this is a deceptive way to try to cut away at the facts of the case that focusing on the bad conduct of the defendant. The defense uses this to decieve judges so testimony of the event do not come in before the jury. 

Mark Blane
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San Diego Personal Injury Lawyer | California Car Accident Attorney