As I understand it, with regards to civil claims handled through insurance there are two duties involved:
- An insurance company has a duty to defend their client, in the US this seems to be inherent in insurance law, in the UK it seems to depend on the insurance covering legal fees (but most do, assume that it is so here)
- A lawyer has a duty to act in their client's best interests
If a lawyer is acting in such a case where the defendant is an individual, they are likely to be paid by the insurance company and representing the individual. In whose best interest are they required to act?
The specific case in question is the result of an car accident, where the insurance company has not made an offer than it is possible for the claimant to accept, has not even acknowledged any offers made by the claimant and I THINK has advised the defendant that they are not required to provide their address to the claimant, even though it is a legal requirement for them to do so. I think that if the claimant initiates legal action they shall be required to declare this lack of provision of address, which I suspect will be very much not in the interests of the defendant, possibly even involving criminal charges.