A jury recently awarded a Florida man nearly $8.2 million in damages from Allstate car insurance company but has to wait for another jury to decide whether or not he can collect. John Clements was blowing leaves on a sidewalk when a truck jumped the sidewalk and plowed into him in November 2004. Clements suffered a broken neck, brain hemorrhages and herniated discs in his neck and back; he was hospitalized for six days.
Clements received $100,000 from the driver of the truck’s insurer, but when he tried to get his insurance company, Allstate, to pay him the $100,000 it owed for underinsured motorist coverage, the company refused to pay, which prompted the lawsuit.
Legally, Allstate is obligated to pay Clements the maximum coverage his underinsured motorist policy allows ($100,000), but when an insurance company should have paid a claim but didn’t, you can sue the company for bad faith. That is how Clements won the $8.2 million. His lawyers must now convince the second jury that Allstate should have paid Clements the $100,000 in underinsured motorist damages so he can collect the award.