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New law requires timely executed settlement releases in most cases

Governor Quinn has signed a bill that requires defendants in most civil actions to provide plaintiffs with an executed release within 14 days of a written settlement agreement.

The law requires such a defendant to pay all sums due under the settlement agreement to the plaintiff within 30 days of when the defendant tendered its release to the opposing party. If a defendant fails to timely pay the money damages, the plaintiff may obtain a judgment against the defendant in the amount set forth in the executed release, plus costs and interest. Find out more in the September IBJ.

Posted on September 5, 2013 by Mark S. Mathewson
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Member Comments (1)

This is a perfect example of a solution looking for a problem. In 41 years in this business, 36 as a defense attorney and 5 in insurance claims, I can count on one hand the number of times a settlement check did not go out in less than 30 days. The idea that insurance companies "defend, deny and don't pay" is one of those urban myths to which my colleagues in the plaintiff's bar so desperately cling. If there are insurance companies out there who simply want to defend, please refer them to me. I would love to have a half-dozen such companies as clients. The reality is that the ability of a defense firm to quickly close files is one of the metrics by which those of us on the defense side are measured. We don't get points for keeping files open. This state is drowning in debt. We have an unresolved, unfunded pension crisis. Do we really need to be wasting time on issues such as this?