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Any attorney that has handled a case with someone under the age of 18 knows that a friendly suit needs to be filed - even to approve a settlement (if it exceeds $1,000). The statute that applies is 12 O.S. § 83. Here’s a checklist we often use at our friendly suit hearings: Friendly Suit Questions. For those interested, here’s the actual statute, 12 O.S. § 83: A. Monies recovered in any court proceeding by a next friend or guardian ad litem for or on behalf of a person who is less than eighteen (18) years of age in excess of One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00) over sums sufficient for paying costs and expenses including medical bills and attorney’s fees shall be deposited, by order of the court, in one or more federally insured banking, credit union or savings and loan institutions, or invested by a bank or trust company having trust powers under federal or state law, approved by the court; provided, that the court may approve a structured settlement, by the terms of which the proceeds of a settlement may be invested by the plaintiff or the defendant in an annuity to be paid to or for the benefit of the minor by an insurance company licensed in this state. B. Until the person becomes eighteen (18) years of age, withdrawals of monies from the account or accounts shall be solely pursuant to order of the court made in the case in which recovery was had. C. When an application for the order is made by a person who is not represented by an attorney, the judge of...
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A while back I read Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell.  The book takes a look at snap judgments, the decisions we make in the “blink” of an eye. It also compares snap decisions with slow analytical decision making.  He opens with a discussion about a certain sculpture. All the evidence, such as testing the material, shows that the sculpture is authentic. This is contrasted to a group of experts who immediately thought something was wrong with the sculpture and questioned its authenticity.  They couldn’t put their finger on it, but something didn’t seem right.  The first word that popped into the mind of one of the experts was “fresh.” So, were the people making snap judgments about the statue’s authenticity correct? They were indeed. After a year of testing, it was determined that the sculpture was in fact a fake. Besides being a good storyteller, Gladwell discusses the likelihood of a doctor getting sued for medical malpractice. He gives the example of you, the reader, working for a medical malpractice insurance company. You’re given two choices to decide how prone a doctor is to committing medical malpractice. Do you examine the doctor’s training and previous records to see how many errors he or she has committed over the last few years? Or, do you listen in on a brief conversation between the doctor and a patient? According to Gladwell, listening in on the doctor/client interaction is a much more accurate way to determine the likelihood of getting sued than where the doctor went to school and how error prone he or she is. Close analysis of malpractice...
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