What is lawsuit bias and do you play a part?
Lawsuit Bias Explained
Many of our intake calls start out like this: “I am sorry to call and bother you. I want you to know that I am not one of “those people” who sue over anything: But…………”
Then the caller goes on to tell us about something horrible that never should have happened, and needs to be remedied. So who are “Those People?”
“Those People” exist in the minds of insurance companies and the people who work for them. The Rockafellow Law Firm never represents anyone unless he or she has a legitimate claim that needs to be pursued. It is the mythical “Those People” that have created a culture of “Lawsuit Bias.”
For the last fifty years or more, the Insurance Companies collectively have engaged in a media campaign to convince the general public that it is bad to pursue a claim and that if you do, your rates will go up. This is just not true. If there were no claims, there would be no need for insurance, and the Companies would have nothing to protect you from.
Many of our clients have Property Damage or Medical Coverage on their auto policies that they don’t want to use for fear it will increase their premiums. This is just not true. If an accident is non-chargeable, meaning someone else caused it, a property damage claim will not raise rates. By law, a claim against medical coverage on your auto policy can’t raise your rates even if you caused the accident. You would not buy a book not to read it. If you have insurance, you should use it as intended: for when it is needed.
Most of us have Health Insurance and we are not afraid to use it for fear that rates will increase. We expect the company to pay our medical bills because we paid the rate requested of us. Yet, because of “Lawsuit Bias” many of us are reluctant to make a claim against our own homeowners or auto coverage because we have been intimidated into thinking that only greedy undeserving people make claims.
Lawsuit Bias has become so pervasive that it is becoming increasingly hard to find fair and impartial jurors. No one thinks they are biased or prejudiced, but if asked the right questions, the bias will shine like a beacon.
We at The Rockafellow Law Firm understand Lawsuit Bias and do all that we can to identify the potential juror who just can’t shake his or her belief that people who bring lawsuits are only looking for “Something for nothing.” Those jurors are stricken for cause.
If you get the opportunity to serve on a jury, beware of the juror who expresses “Lawsuit Bias.” Remind he or she that they took an oath to decide the case on the merits, not on personal beliefs. Let your voice be heard.