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CIPR Journal Club March 21, 2024

March 21, 2024

Nuclear Verdicts, Tort Liability, and Legislative Responses

Join CIPR on March 21st at 11:00 CT for the next installment of our Journal Club webinar series. Each Journal Club features a guided discussion of one article from our Journal of Insurance Regulation. These sessions are interactive and attendees are encouraged to engage in the conversation.

We will be discussing “Nuclear Verdicts, Tort Liability, and Legislative Responses,” by Cassandra R. Cole and Chad Marzen. The number and size of punitive damage awards has grown considerably since the 1980s. In 2021, there were 24 jury verdicts awarded in excess of $100 million. These verdicts totaled $309 billion. This article brings together insurance and legal studies literature related to tort reform and nuclear verdicts to provide a comprehensive examination of nuclear verdicts. The primary focus is on a discussion of the effects of nuclear verdicts on the insurance industry and actions that are being taken to mitigate nuclear verdicts, including legal strategies and state legislative activity.

Please review the article before the seminar and bring your questions and observations. A brief executive summary is provided at the beginning of the article for your convenience.

Some possible discussion questions include:

Why are punitive damage awards increasing over time?
Are these punitive damage awards justified? In some cases?
What can companies and insurers do better to protect themselves against nuclear verdicts?
Should caps be put in place on punitive damage awards?
Or what other legislation is in order?

CE and Missouri CLE Credit available (Course ID 740447)



About the National Association of Insurance Commissioners

As part of our state-based system of insurance regulation in the United States, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) provides expertise, data, and analysis for insurance commissioners to effectively regulate the industry and protect consumers. The U.S. standard-setting organization is governed by the chief insurance regulators from the 50 states, the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories. Through the NAIC, state insurance regulators establish standards and best practices, conduct peer reviews, and coordinate regulatory oversight. NAIC staff supports these efforts and represents the collective views of state regulators domestically and internationally.