BewareVacek v. United States Postal Service, 9th Circ. Court of Appeal No. 04-15961 (5/24/06). In the Vacek case an experienced attorney alleged that he had preserved his clients' Federal Tort Claims Act claims by mailing Form 95 to the defendant agency (the USPS) on a timely basis. However a year passed before further negotiations on the claims. At that point the deadline for filing form 95 had expired. The U.S. Postal Service denied ever receiving the claim form. Even with a declaration of the attorney under oath that he had timely mailed the claim form to the USPS, the U.S. District Court still dismissed the claims stating that under the FTCA it was the claimant's burden of proof to show that the USPS had received the claim form. Even the fact that the messenger charged with delivery of the claim form was the USPS itself was insufficient to invoke the mailbox rule.
Game Truck Georgia was recently hit with a $4.7 million judgment for injuries arising out of a game of "bubble soccer". But this was after they had pleaded with their insurer to settle those same claims for a pretrial offer of $1 million - which was within their policy limits. Their insurer, Atlantic Specialty Insurance, declined those offers and forced the case to trial. Now the attorneys for Game Truck Georgia are chasing their own insurance company for its bad faith refusal to settle - a refusal which led to the insolvency and desctruction of their business.
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Martindale Hubbell - AV rated lawyer - Best Rating Possible
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