Joseph Manzo Discusses Tort Reforms Proposed by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis
Hinshaw partner Joseph Manzo was recently quoted in Law360 on the subject of tort reforms proposed by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and other Florida legislative leaders. One of the proposed reforms would clarify that negligence alone on the part of an insurer is not enough to constitute bad faith, and also make it more difficult for claimants to get punitive damages on bad faith claims.
Manzo said the bad faith standard in practice has "become somewhat of a scam." He said even when an insurance carrier acted reasonably, a judge will allow a bad faith claim to go to a jury because the standard is so broad. Then at trial, jurors see a poor insured pitted against a large company, and that often does not go well for the insurer.
"People have this idea that insurance carriers are looking to stiff people, and it's really not the case," Manzo said. "There could be reasonable differences of opinion. I think juries get confused when that's the case. Bad faith is supposed to be about more than a simple disagreement."
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"Fla. Insurance Reforms Could Clobber Smaller Legal Claims" was published by Law360 on February 16, 2023.