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Discuss case with opposing atty upon request?

Discussion in 'Small Claims & Municipal Court' started by egrace, Sep 30, 2022.

  1. egrace

    egrace Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Hi :)

    I have filed suit in SMC with a carrier, who has refused to honor the claim of damage during a shipment I sent last year, where I did pay for insurance. The initial rejection was basically "this is not covered", which it should be.

    Ann atty from the company emailed me telling me that they have received the small claims complaint, and wish to discuss over the phone. I know that I am not required to, but should I? Or should I remain silent? My fear is that they are trying to get info out of me so that they may better prepare for the trial. If they are fully prepared on that day, then so be it, but I don't want to help them. I really don't want to tip my hand here; they may not be on top of exactly what my angle is, and I would prefer to not give it to them prior to trial.

    Thoughts? I do not have an atty. Thanks!
  2. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Of course you should. He may want to offer you money. No harm in finding out what he wants to talk about. If you don't like what he's saying, just end the conversation and go to court.

    You haven't said where you are but many small claims courts allow discovery where each party provides information to the other if they properly ask for it.

    Besides, you have evidence that the insurance doesn't exclude that damage, right?

    Your fear is unfounded.

    Call the attorney.
  3. zddoodah

    zddoodah Well-Known Member

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    Huh? This sentence seems to presume knowledge of a lot of background facts we don't know. Also, what is "SMC," and in what state did you file suit?

    No one here has sufficient factual knowledge to answer these questions intelligently. However, consider the following: What will happen if you "remain silent"? You'll go to trial and may win or lose. What will happen if you talk to the lawyer? You might settle the case. Or the lawyer might explain why your case has no merit and you won't waste any more time on the matter? Or you might accomplish nothing and go to trial.

    That's the goal of just about every litigation and, unless you're in a state that doesn't allow pre-trial discovery in small claims court, the information can be obtained in that manner.

    This isn't Perry Mason. If this is nothing more than a claim against an insurer relating to a damaged shipment, there aren't likely to be any big secrets.
    justblue likes this.

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