Since forming its own collection agency in July, 2009, Florida law firm LaBovick & LaBovick has filed more than 1,200 lawsuits against insurers in the Fort Lauderdale-based court.
Some of the lawsuits seek as little as $3.89 in damages. A $16.99 lawsuit isn’t uncommon. Many are in the $38 range. Few crack $50.
“It’s outrageous,” said attorney Douglas Brehm, who is representing Allstate in 150 — and growing daily — lawsuits that have been filed by the LaBovick firm.
“We’ve been sued for $2.56, $1.89, $3.42. It’s a disgrace,” said Richard Parrillo Sr., founder and CEO of United Automobile Insurance Co.
LaBovick isn’t after such small change, critics claim: “They’re looking to shake us down for legal fees,” said Parrillo, who has been hit with 38 LaBovick suits. “It’s all about the fees.”
It can parlay even a $1 settlement into thousands of dollars in legal fees, said Jill Carabotta, litigation manager for Parrillo’s company. If an insurer refuses to settle and pay the hefty legal fees, it can drag out the litigation, forcing the company to spend thousands to defend itself.
Source: Sun Sentinel