Insurance claims managers and handlers should want to resolve their cases in 2020. (Photo: Bigstock) Insurance claims managers and handlers should want to resolve their cases in 2020. (Photo: Bigstock)

In years past, insurers dreaded the advent of a trial at the end of a year. The thought was that juries were likely to be more generous with their awards and that any goodwill would be given exclusively to the plaintiff. Mediations and settlement conferences were crammed into October and November — and possibly for those late to the party — even the first week of December, all designed to try to settle the case before the pending December trial date.

Times have changed. Civil trials won’t be happening this year, and insurers may seem less pressured to try to resolve cases by year-end. The longer the case goes on, the more pressure there may be on the plaintiff whose date in court, and any potential award may be many months away, at best. Or at least that is how many plaintiff lawyers may see the current backlog of cases. Will settlement now be seen as a weakness on the part of the plaintiff? Better to hang onto those cases to a time when defendants may fear a looming trial?

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