Direct Insurance in No Fault Auto Insurance States

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Compare direct insurance quotes from the following providers in your state. Aside from reform of existing laws of negligence and damages, any blueprint to upgrade the workings of the fault auto insurance system must be accompanied by improvements in the court system itself. The existence of court congestion, regardless of its cause, is intolerable. Automobile lawsuits are often referred as a “cancer in our court system”. In some urban areas, a case may languish as long as five years on the docket before being brought to jury trial.

The solution is not to deny individuals with legitimate disagreements access to impartial justice. Use of the judicial system cannot be forfeited for what is inexpensive or expedient. One obvious solution is the appointment of more judges and the construction of more courtrooms, often obsolete and inadequate for the volume of business. As a social cost, it is far less expensive to expand the courts than abolish the right to use the court system for all except those litigants representing huge financial interests.

Criminal law and corporate battles may someday be all that remains of the adversary system. In addition, greater latitude must be given para judicial court staff to deal effectively with the more routine court matters that burden the limited number of trial judges now on the bench. The staff of any clerk’s office is competent to handle chores such as the call of the trial list, the handling of certain undisputed motions, requests for postponements, and so forth. The potential of para judicial personnel has scarcely been tapped.

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Such people could be employed to advantage at the pretrial stage, to hear and sift through the issues and find areas of agreement, encourage settlement, and conserve the time spent on trials. Also, court schedules should be lengthened, and modern data processing techniques used to eliminate the administrative waste tied to old-fashioned compilation of records and documents. Despite the original pleas for no-fault auto insurance as a means of lifting the burdens on the courts, they can look forward to growing numbers of automobile cases; since states are heading toward dual fault-no-fault systems, lawsuit volume may be on the rise. No-fault plans split some claims into several pieces.

An automobile accident that formerly resulted in one claim may now generate two or three separate lawsuits. To reduce court traffic significantly, the smaller claim must be eliminated entirely or made subject to compulsory arbitration. Plans such as Illinois has adopted, which have compulsory arbitration built into them, have taken a major step toward erasing the small claim from the docket. Compulsory arbitration of cases below $3,000 could result in a reduction of 80-90 per cent of the courts’ automobile accident business. This step is not designed to deny any accident victim access to the courts, but only to provide a forum for quick and relatively informal hearings.

The courts are only one cause of delay in lawsuits. As U.S.Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren Burger put it, “Lawyers are competitive creatures, and the adversary system encourages tension and often rewards delay.” To counteract this, the plan used in the province of Ontario might be considered. When a defendant makes an attempt in good faith to settle a lawsuit, the offer is transmitted on a “payment into court” basis. If the plaintiff refuses the offer and is later totally unsuccessful or recovers a verdict less than the original offer, he is charged the defendant’s costs of litigation. The plan is designed to create incentives for the parties to settle their disputes amicably, by making the failure to do so financially unattractive.

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