It's a medical malpractice case.
It's been going on for two long years.
The doctor is fed up. He wants nothing more to do with this case.
He's spent enough time and aggravation worrying about this case and the outcome.
He calls his lawyer and tells him to get him out of this case.
He doesn't care what he has to do but he wants him to settle it and end this case now.
His attorney cautions him.
His attorney tells him the case is defensible and the plaintiff does not have a meritorious case.
The doctor doesn't care.
He knows if he goes to trial, he'll be spending weeks out of his office, sitting in court.
He will spend weeks in the courtroom sitting in front of a jury being evaluated by six members of the community.
He'll have to explain every single thing he did in detail.
He knows the attorneys will be battling.
He knows the medical experts will be battling.
He knows constant objections go on during a medical malpractice trial.
He wants nothing to do with it.
He wants to go back and treat his patients.
He wants his life back to normal.
He tells his attorney he would rather have root canal then sit for three weeks in the courtroom listening to witnesses, legal arguments and then having a jury determine whether the injured victim is more likely right than wrong that what she is claiming is true.
The defense lawyer takes this information back to the insurance company.
The insurance company believes the case is winnable.
They do not want to offer a dime to try and settle.
They are willing to go to the ends of the earth and to pay whatever it takes for trial preparation and get the best medical experts to come in and testify.
They are willing to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars in order to fully defend this case and this doctor.
What happens when there's such an apparent conflict between the doctor, his lawyer and the insurance company?
The answer is, it all depends on what leverage the doctor can exert on the insurance company in order to compel them to try and settle the case.
You should know that a physician has an obligation to help his attorney and his insurance company with a defense in a medical malpractice case.
That's part of his medical malpractice insurance contract.
However, that does not mean he must blindly agree to everything they suggest.
If the doctor has good reason to want to settle, there may be an opportunity to begin settlement negotiations in an attempt to settle this for a small amount of money.
The plaintiff's attorney may recognize that his client's injuries are not that significant.
In that instance, if both sides are receptive to a settlement, it may be possible to negotiate what is called a 'nuisance' settlement simply to get rid of the case.
In reality, plaintiffs attorneys never like this scenario. Here's why...
They've taken on a case believing that there is merit.
A medical expert has confirmed that there is merit.
They've spent hundreds and thousands of dollars to prosecute the case.
They've spent years moving this case forward through the legal system.
To then ultimately resolve the case for a few dollars is not only a waste of time, energy an effort but looking back, it clearly reflects a poor choice by the attorney to initially have accepted this case to begin with.