Plaintiff Elizabeth Clarke contends that she has suffered from severe ulcerative colitis for four and a half years, resulting in her total disability. Defendant insurance company paid disability benefits for two years, and then terminated payments on the ground that she was not totally disabled under the terms of her policy. The causes and effects of ulcerative colitis are debatable, and there is disagreement between the medical experts involved in the case.
Two years ago, Clarke sued the insurance company in California state court, alleging contract and tort claims and requesting claiming disability benefits and punitive damages based on alleged malicious intent. Discovery is almost over, and the judge has indicated that she would like the case to be settled out of court. Now, the lawyers for the two parties are meeting to discuss settlement.
Both sides have very strong and very weak elements to their cases. How does the way in which these elements are handled affect the negotiation?
A great deal of relevant criteria is available for analysis and presentation. How does the use of criteria affect the creation and distribution of value in the negotiation?
What constitutes success in this negotiation? Avoiding trial? Making the other side apologize? Getting (or avoiding paying) a lot of money? A combination of these?
Teacher's package includes:
Participant materials for both sides
No teaching note available
Clarke v. California Insurance Co., et al. Attributes
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