Proposal for Settlement

Florida’s offer of judgment statute is found in section 768.79 of the Florida Statutes. The statute reads:

Offer of judgment and demand for judgment.—

 (1) In any civil action for damages filed in the courts of this state, if a defendant files an offer of judgment which is not accepted by the plaintiff within 30 days, the defendant shall be entitled to recover reasonable costs and attorney’s fees incurred by her or him or on the defendant’s behalf pursuant to a policy of liability insurance or other contract from the date of filing of the offer if the judgment is one of no liability or the judgment obtained by the plaintiff is at least 25 percent less than such offer, and the court shall set off such costs and attorney’s fees against the award. Where such costs and attorney’s fees total more than the judgment, the court shall enter judgment for the defendant against the plaintiff for the amount of the costs and fees, less the amount of the plaintiff’s award. If a plaintiff files a demand for judgment which is not accepted by the defendant within 30 days and the plaintiff recovers a judgment in an amount at least 25 percent greater than the offer, she or he shall be entitled to recover reasonable costs and attorney’s fees incurred from the date of the filing of the demand. If rejected, neither an offer nor demand is admissible in subsequent litigation, except for pursuing the penalties of this section.

Continue Reading Florida’s Offer of Judgment Statute Is Not Applicable to Actions in Equity

A proposal for settlement in Florida can be filed by a party to a lawsuit pursuant to Florida Statute §768.79. The proposal for settlement, or offer of judgment as it is sometimes called, is different than an informal settlement offer during negotiations. The proposal for settlement can potentially bring consequences to the offeree if it is not accepted. The proposal for settlement is utilized often in litigation by insurers, notably in Hurricane Wilma cases. I wanted to discuss some of the concerns policyholders may have when an insurer files a proposal for settlement in their case.

Continue Reading What Is A Proposal for Settlement Pursuant to Florida Statute?