In the state of Florida on first party insurance claims that are settled through mediation instead of the court room, and an award is made in favor of the insured are all attorney fees still paid by the Insurance carrier?

We are in a contingency agreement but are not being provided information as to the impact of a mediation settlement. Is this tied to the

Asked on August 24, 2018 under Insurance Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

If the insurance policy provided for attorneys fees for the insured in the event of a successful first party claim against the insurer, they insured should have their attorney's fees paid--unless the policy specifically, by its terms, only provided for attorney's fees in the even of going to court or excluded the mediation situation. There is no inherent right to attorney's fees in American law; they must be provided for by law, which only happens in a few special circumstances (e.g. discrimination claims; consummer fraud claims) or by contract (like an insurance policy). If provided for by contract, the you have to see when the contract awards them. As a general matter, a successful mediation outcome would be considered the same as a successful arbitration award or outcome in court, but the policy could be more restrictive than that general understanding.


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