Insurance Co punished in California

logo_SB-HDRA jury was fed up and disgusted by an insurance company.  It refused to pay the claim of Thomas Nickerson, a former Marine and a paraplegic.  Thomas fell off a ramp getting into his handicap van and broke his leg in two places.  He  was in the hospital for 109 days.  The insurance company only paid expenses for 19 days. (This was an indemnity policy).

California allows for punitive damages.  The jury entered a verdict for $35,000 for pain and suffering.  They then assessed a whopping penalty of $19M to punish the insurance company for being so rotten.

Washington State does not have punitive damages.  The exception is that under the Insurance Fair Conduct Act, a court can multiply the actual jury verdict by three times.

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About Karen
Karen Koehler, partner at the nationally recognized law firm of SKW, blogs about all things related to spinal cord injuries...More
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On Another's Sorrow
Can I see another's woe,
And not be in sorrow too?
Can I see another's grief,
And not seek for kind relief.

Can I see a falling tear.
And not feel my sorrows share,
Can a father see his child,
Weep, nor be with sorrow fill'd.

Can a mother sit and hear.
An infant groan an infant fear?
No no never can it be,
Never never can it be

And can he who smiles on all
Hear the wren with sorrows small
Hear the small bird's grief & care
Hear the woes that infants bear

And not sit beside the nest
Pouring pity in their breast.
And not sit the cradle near
Weeping tear on infant's tear.

And not sit both night & day.
Wiping all our tears away.
O! no never can it be.
Never, never can it be!

He doth give His joy to all:
He becomes an infant small,
He becomes a man of woe,
He doth feel the sorrow too.

Think not thou canst sigh a sigh,
And thy Maker is not by:
Think not thou canst weep a tear,
And thy Maker is not near.

O He gives to us His joy,
That our grief He may destroy:
Till our grief is fled and gone
He doth sit by us and moan.


— William Blake