July 2016 E-Bulletin for Arbitrators

This month's E-Bulletin topics include:

  1. QwikShare Recap: Admissions of Liability
  2. Upcoming Arbitrator QwikShares — Enroll Today!
  3. Proof of Payment Not Required
  4. Member Feedback... Thank You, Arbitrators!

QwikShare Recap: Admissions of Liability

Editor's Note: An article with updated information on liability admission appears in the May 2017 issue of E-Bulletin for Arbitrators.

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Upcoming Arbitrator QwikShares — Enroll Today!

Webinar Speech Bubble GraphicEnroll today for our upcoming Arbitrator QwikShare Webinars! Our QwikShares are 20-minute, topic-specific Webinars that focus on issues that frequently generate questions from arbitrators and post-decision corrections, and attendees may ask questions via Chat. We know your time is valuable. We hope you'll appreciate and take advantage of the opportunity for AF to quickly share important feedback and tips without a significant investment of your time.

Enroll in Does POI Prove Liability? Liability arguments related to auto accidents are often based on point of impact. This Webinar explores how point of impact may or may not support a liability theory. Case examples will be reviewed.

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Proof of Payment Not Required

Dollar Sign GraphicWe continue to see, on occasion, decisions that award no damages because the party seeking the damages did not submit proof of payment. As noted in the Guide for Arbitrators, and as communicated in the July 2015 E-Bulletin for Arbitrators, proof of payment is not required and isn't even at issue, unless specifically disputed by a respondent. An arbitrator may not rule against the filer on the issue of damage solely because no proof of payment has been included; it is only necessary to show proof of damages (e.g., estimate, repair bill, medical bill).

The distinction between proof of payment and proof of damages is important. Proof of payment is a must only when a respondent, through its answer, affirmatively challenges the existence of a subrogation claim. If not challenged, the presumption is the filer (insurer) has made payment to its insured and a subrogation claim exists, or, (self-insured) has incurred the damages. Such challenges should be rare, and the challenge should be substantiated. A challenge should not simply be raised because the filer did not list proof of payment in its evidence listing. We don't want to require the submission of unnecessary documentation, and, again, for self-insureds, such documentation may not even be available.

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Member Feedback... Thank You, Arbitrators!

Thank you keyboardThe following is recent member feedback on decisions. Kudos to all on providing the high-quality decisions our membership values and appreciates.

"Well thought out and written decision. Excellent!"

Thank you, Arbitrator Greg Jones!

"It was fair. It's cut-and-dry. The arbitrator reviewed the circumstances and made a decision based on the evidence, so I think that she understood what both sides were trying to say and made a decision. I think that that's the biggest reason why it would be 'excellent.' The reviewer understood what both parties were thinking and made a decision based on what she saw."

Thank you, Arbitrator Faith Prakop!

"Even though I disagree with some of the reasons for the decision, it was very detailed in explaining why the arbitrator decided what she did. Instead of just saying, 'Proved damages' or 'Proved reduction of damages' she actually explained why she made the decision that she made. Regardless if I agree or not, she explained it. That's good."

Thank you, Arbitrator Jolynn Renaud!

"Just the fact that you can tell the arbitrator reviewed everything, all the evidence, and based her decision on that. The write-up and everything is very clear as to why the decision was made the way it is. It's a very good decision."

Thank you, Arbitrator Frenchelle Thompson!

"The section where the arbitrator said why she rendered the decision, although I somewhat disagree, but she explained it. She was very specific in why she made her decision. Then the fact that whatever she had reviewed, which shows that she looked at everything that was presented. The statements, the police report, and the point of impact. All that, so that was pretty good."

Thank you, Arbitrator Thomessia Moore-Lawson!

"To be honest with you, I did put in a lot of evidence, and I'm glad to see it looks like the arbitrator did give close consideration to our evidence. I thought we had a good case, and I'm just happy to see that apparently the arbitrator and I were on the same page. Without going into too much detail, we did provide quite a bit of evidence. I'm glad to see that it appears obvious that everything was considered."

Thank you, Arbitrator Anthony Roth!

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