Given the severity of most of my client’s injuries, once they hire us as their motorcycle accident attorney, they expect our office to do everything we can to recover the maximum settlement possible.
As such, when the other party’s insurance carrier is being unreasonable in a motorcycle accident settlement, we file a motorcycle accident lawsuit against the person who caused the accident and also against your own insurance company – for underinsured motorist benefits.
Recently in Allegheny County, in the case of Stepanovich v. McGraw and State Farm Insurance Company, this is exactly what happened.
State Farm was being unreasonable in their attempts to settle the case with Mr. Stepanovich but because Pennsylvania does not allow any references to any insurance company during a jury trial, the Judge referenced the State Farm Insurance Company as “another interested party” and permitted a “double teaming” meaning that he allowed State Farm to have their own attorney and the person who caused the accident to have their own attorney present during the trial.
As a result of this “double teaming” the Plaintiff lost the trial, and then filed post-trial motions with the trial court.
After a thorough review of the post-trial motions, the Judge reversed his own ruling and granted a new trial ordering that the defendant insurance company, State Farm, should be identified by name to the jury. The trial judge wrote “by allowing the insurance company to remain unidentified, was advancing the perpetuation of a myth that has outlived its usefulness”.
The Judge in this motorcycle accident lawsuit further opined that virtually every juror that owns an automobile or drives one, knows about the necessity in our complex society to have insurance on that vehicle.
Jurors are also aware that under Pennsylvania Law, every automobile owner must have his vehicle insured. Thus it is a denial of reality to pretend that insurance is not involved in every motor vehicle case.
In doing so, the judge was actually saying that every reasonable juror understands that there is motor vehicle insurance, or should be, in every auto or motorcycle accident claim and therefore to refuse to identify the name of the underinsured motorist carrier for fear of prejudicing that insurance carrier is, in reality, a myth.
If you have any questions regarding motorcycle accident lawsuits and underinsured motorists please contact Pennsylvania motorcycle accident attorney Lee D. Gaber, Esquire, “The Cycle Attorney” at 888-292-5352 (888-CYCLE-LAW).