Legal Articles, Litigation

Bifurcation of First-Party Auto Claims in New Mexico

A motion to bifurcate is often the first line of defense in a litigated first-party insurance claim. The Defendant carrier contends bifurcation streamlines discovery and disposes of “extra-contractual” issues without having to use the court’s time and resources. In truth, however, by moving to bifurcate, the first-party insurance is trying to accomplish two major goals: 1) prevent discovery of harmful and/or “proprietary” business and/or claims file information that the insurance company knows will support an insured’s bad faith and extra-contractual claims; and 2) delay addressing the extra contractual claims by creating another hurdle for the insured to clear, i.e. a discovery and trial on the damages before allowing a discovery or trial on the merits of the extra-contractual first-party claims. The individual facts and circumstances of the case that warrant non-bifurcation should be emphasized with the court. Plaintiff should emphasize facts which could permit recovery on extracontractual claims regardless of whether or Plaintiff can prevail on the contractual claim. Plaintiff should emphasize arguments that the extra-contractual issues will have to be resolved regardless of the number of trials or the order of discovery, so in the interest of judicial efficiency, bifurcation would not be appropriate.

What is a Lis Pendens?

This article provides basic information about lis pendens, and when such notices may be properly recorded.

What is a Civil Writ?

This article provides examples of writs (written judicial orders) issued by California courts.

Writs of Possession Under California Law

This article provides a summary of various writs issued by California law to assist with recovery of tangible property.

What is a Default Judgment?

This article provides an overview of what happens when a defendant in a civil action fails to respond to the complaint served on him/her.

Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation (SLAPP)

SLAPP is an acronym for "strategic lawsuit against public participation." See, Jarrow Formulas, Inc. v. LaMarche, 31 Cal. 4th 728, 732, fn. 1 (2003). Basically, a SLAPP is a lawsuit that has the effect to chill exercise of protected free speech.

What is a "Nunc Pro Tunc" Order?

"Nunc pro tunc" is a Latin phrase which literally means "now for then."

“CERTIFYING” DOCUMENTS VIA THIRD-PARTY SOFTWARE: BINDING ON THE COURT?

“CERTIFYING” DOCUMENTS VIA THIRD-PARTY SOFTWARE: BINDING ON THE COURT? Published in The Florida Bar Journal – September/October, 2013 Vol 87, No. 8.

Insurance Coverage For Business Interruption Due to Coronavirus

Do you have coverage for lost business under your general liability policy's business interruption provisions?

Good Faith Myth

A defense often used in financial elder abuse cases is a statement that says something like, "I only did what he wanted me to do." This "good faith" defense is no longer an automatic defense. The law on financial elder abuse has slowly evolved to hold people accountable for financial elder abuse even when the bad-actor claims he or she was acting good faith. This article shows the changes in the law and how bad-actors who act in "good faith" can still be held accountable.

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