One tactic big insurance companies sometimes use in litigation is seeking
to create an MDL – or Multidistrict Litigation. An MDL effectively
consolidates a large number of cases for discovery and pretrial purposes.
While an MDL can sometimes promote efficiency, it primarily benefits the
insurance company. First, it prevents the individual plaintiff from having
discovery and pretrial issues decided based on the facts of
his case. Second, it allows the insurance company to avoid producing their
representatives for deposition in individual plaintiffs’ cases.
Last year, Texas insurance giant Farmers asked the MDL Panel – a
group of judges appointed by the Texas Supreme Court – to create
an MDL for approximately 1,600 cases arising out of many different storms
all over Texas. The Panel denied Farmers’ request for one MDL and
instead created eight groups of cases and three MDL courts to handle them.
The Panel was persuaded by Farmers’ argument that the cases are
related because all the lawsuits made allegations that Farmers’
institutional “business practices” were unlawful.
Importantly, the Panel
specifically excluded Daly & Black’s cases from the MDL. Daly & Black had pointed out to the Court in its response
to Farmers’ petition for an MDL that the 25 Daly & Black lawsuits
included in Farmers’ request
do not make “business practices” allegations. This means that the
25 plaintiffs Daly & Black represents in these cases will be able
to pursue their cases individually, in the courts where they are filed,
and based on their specific facts. Only two other individual cases out
of approximately 1,600 received this treatment.
Daly & Black pleads cases based on the facts available at the time.
It is because Daly & Black does this that we were able to persuade
the MDL Panel to exclude our 25 cases from the MDL to the benefit of our
here to read more.
If an insurance company has delayed, denied, or underpaid your claim, contact
us. Smart lawyers make a difference in every case.