Places to fly King Air's...

Center_Mid

Well-Known Member
Re: Places to fly King Air\'s...

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I'd sure like to know what states you are talking about.

There are no limits to liability in FL, and that is the largest training state in the US. The Tort Reform act has been shot down 3 times in a row now.

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Yeah, somehow I heard about that. It was passed, then shot down by the feds, and has floundered ever since.

Luckily for Cessna, Beech, and Piper, that doesn't matter in the slightest. When they sell an airplane anywhere in the US, the sales contract will contain a choice of forum and/or choice of law clause requiring that all claims against the manufacturer be brought in such and such a state or court. You can bet that the clause will specify a state with a brief statute of repose. Those clauses are routinely upheld by courts.
 

Center_Mid

Well-Known Member
Re: Places to fly King Air\'s...

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The only reason they resumed was when congress approved a 30 year limit to manufacturer liability.

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No, it's an 18-year limit under the General Aviation Revitalization Act signed by Clinton in 1994.
 

Mr_Creepy

Well-Known Member
Re: Places to fly King Air\'s...

I suppose lawyers are like Feds. Ask 5 a question, get 5 different answers!

I fly for two insurance law firms here in Orlando (they represent the OTHER side.) They are all excellent attorneys (in my eyes.) Then you see the plaintiffs attorneys fly in and climbing out of G-IVs, Challengers, etc. And they seem totally incompetent to me. (My dad is a judge so I have some legal experience, but nothing that counts!)

My guys are always complaining about the huge settlements, and these incompetent attorneys walking away with one third of 2 or 3 million dollars.

One of the famous guys, Arthur Allen Wolk, he flies around in a warbird and some big corporate jet. He was the guy who got 113 million out of continental for the B36 crash where a family of 4 was killed by fire. I understand how horrible it was but sheesh, look who sued - a second cousin and a nephew! Now how did THEY suffer to the tune of 113 million????
 

Center_Mid

Well-Known Member
Re: Places to fly King Air\'s...

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I fly for two insurance law firms here in Orlando (they represent the OTHER side.)

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I guess I should clarify. I also work for an insurance firm. I just think that the tort issue sometimes gets overblown. It's kind of like flying. My family is worried about me flying because all that they ever hear about in the news are crashes - they never hear about routine, successful flights that happen every day. Same with lawsuits. Most lawsuits in the US get dismissed or are settled for a nominal amount, but you only ever hear about the huge jury verdicts (which are often reduced on appeal after the media has turned its attention elsewhere). The largest settlement that my firm has negotiated was a $10 million payout to plaintiffs in a condo construction defect case. Most of our settlements, tho, are in the $5,000 to $15,000 range, and many more of our cases are successfully dismissed.

I've met a few high-rolling pf's lawyers around here, but since WA doesn't allow punitive damages, it's actually difficult to make a fortune doing that (I do think all states should prohibit punitive damages, by the way). The high-rollers are the exception by far.

I guess my basic point is that big companies know that they will be sued. That's the point of having liability insurance. If the insurer manages the risk pool well, then even a big judgment or settlement shouldn't affect the long-term prospects for the company. Moderate legal changes are needed in some states, but I'm suspicious of things like $250,000 caps.
 

NJA_Capt

Well-Known Member
Re: Places to fly King Air\'s...

Needles,
The lawsuits in the '70s and '80s is what caused Cessna and Piper to stop production in the late '80s. And for your information in 2001, the state of FL awarded a $480 million verdict AGAINST Cessna. Also in the last two years, a $350 million suit was awarded against a helo manufacturer.

In your quotes about the prices of used aircraft. You are comparing apples and oranges. Cessna stopped because of liability, PERIOD. Piper went bancrupt because of liability. Period.

The reason used prices are so high, aside from market fluctuations, is the fact that NEW aircraft are so expensive. Same as you building a house for $200,000, and two of your neighbors build one for $500,000. Your property value goes up.

The main issue was Cessna stopping production in the '80s. Liability was the single biggest factor. Not used prices.
PS...Before Piper went out of business (first time), they had $400 million in sales that year (not profit). Notice the FL suit awarded $480 million for ONE ACCIDENT.

PSS....Reread my post on Wells v Smith. It was 1991, not 1970/80. Watch out for those loopholes!
 

Center_Mid

Well-Known Member
Re: Places to fly King Air\'s...

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Before Piper went out of business (first time), they had $400 million in sales that year (not profit). Notice the FL suit awarded $480 million for ONE ACCIDENT.

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Yes, but their liability insurer will pay a portion or all of the judgment, so the comparison the total revenue is irrelevent.

As far as the 1991 case is concerned - if it was decided in 1991, then it probably arose 2-10 years before. Litigation takes a long time. No loopholes needed, Capt.!

I don't know anything about a $480 million dollar verdict, so I cannot comment on that. Sometimes such verdicts are justified (see Ford Pinto litigation) and sometimes they are not.
 
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