Limits of Insurance Coverage.
The amount of liability insurance coverage the Defendant maintains is considered highly prejudicial and, therefore, inadmissible at trial.
Existence of Insurance Coverage.
Whether the Defendant maintained any liability insurance coverage is, for the same reasons, also inadmissible at trial.
Prior Similar Acts.
Except in very limited instances, evidence regarding matters such as the number of times the Defendant has been involved in a car wreck or how many other people have sustained similar injuries while at the same nursing home is not admissible at trial.
Alabama Uniform Traffic Crash Report.
The “Accident Report” filled out by a law enforcement officer cannot be offered into evidence at trial. This is largely due to the fact that the report likely contains hearsay and conclusions reached by the officer.
Defendant’s Net Worth.
Although the overall wealth of the Defendant might seem useful to know, especially for the purpose of assessing punitive damages, such evidence is inadmissible at trial. It may, however, be admitted after the trial has concluded (outside the presence of the jury), for the purpose of determining whether any punitive damages award is excessive.
Plaintiff’s Wealth or Poverty.
Unless the Defendant’s attorney brings it up during trial, the Plaintiff is not allowed to testify that he or she failed to seek medical treatment because it was too expensive.
Evidence that there were any settlement discussions between the parties, or the amount offered by either party, is inadmissible at trial.
Payment of Medical Expenses.
The jury is not permitted to know whether the Defendant has paid any or all of the medical bills the Plaintiff incurred as a result of the Defendant’s actions.
But Consider This:
A jury is permitted to know that the Plaintiff had health insurance coverage and the resulting effect on his or her medical bills. This is important because typically a health insurance carrier will pay substantially less than the amount charged by the hospital or physician for services rendered. As a result, the overall value of the Plaintiff’s claim may be reduced simply because he or she has health insurance