Risk Manager Applies Quality Approach: Litigation Management

By Pelland, Dave | Risk Management, December 1997 | Go to article overview

Risk Manager Applies Quality Approach: Litigation Management


Pelland, Dave, Risk Management


Runaway defense costs and surprisingly large settlements are more often signs of ineffective litigation management than unfavorable laws or jurisdictions, according to Mick McGavin, manager of safety planning and claims for Johnson Controls, Inc., in Milwaukee. To gain better control of his company's workers' compensation lawsuits, Mr. McGavin has developed a total quality management approach to litigation-a process that generates positive results consistently by eliminating variability.

"The quality of your defense counsel and your preparation play a big role in determining the ultimate cost of litigation," Mr. McGavin says. "You have to decide how you want the cases to be handled, reduce your desired procedures into a single policy and make sure that those guidelines are followed in every case."

Mr. McGavin implemented the multistep process to controlling litigation after an examination of his company's workers' compensation results.

"Our large cases represented a majority of our total cost, even though they were a small percentage of the number of cases," he says. "Because most of those were litigated claims, we realized that controlling the quality of our litigation process would reduce our overall cost."

To improve its litigation program, Mr. McGavin says Johnson Controls retained a legal firm to help the company identify best practices such as proper planning and budgeting, and to work with local counsel to make sure the desired procedures were followed.

As a result, Johnson Controls implemented a multistep litigation management process that requires its local attorneys to prepare a preliminary analysis of each case. The process also includes progress measurements and checklists to monitor the various steps that must be completed while a case is pending.

The preliminary assessment begins with a detailed look at the issues being disputed in the underlying claim and predictions of the most likely and worst-case outcomes. Attorneys also prepare budgets for defending lawsuits. In addition, Mr. McGavin says, he asks for an estimated timetable, which aligns everyone's expectations and preserves a sense of urgency.

"Estimating the likely outcome and the worst case helps us identify the risks we face by pushing a case forward, which puts the case into better perspective," Mr. McGavin says. At this stage, the company also asks its attorneys to identify the likely employment outcome. Whether the employee intends to return to work or is likely to be fired will infLuence the ultimate disposition and cost of the case. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Risk Manager Applies Quality Approach: Litigation Management
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.