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TJ, Esq.
TJ, Esq., Attorney
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Can personal injury claims for damages (federal tort claims

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Can personal injury claims for damages (federal tort claims where injury is defined as invasion of rights) become settled and contractual in nature outside of a court judgment? That is to say, if the tort feasor refuses to rebut any affidavits and overcome the evidence against him/her, is there a (commercial) process the claimant can follow to obtain a "non-judicial" default judgment that would allow the claim for damages to be sold or pledged? Or do all judgments have to be decided in court and the only way to convert an injury/federal tort claim into a contractual claim is via court ordered structured settlement?

Hello and thank you for allowing me to address your legal question.

“Can personal injury claims for damages (federal tort claims where injury is defined as invasion of rights) become settled and contractual in nature outside of a court judgment?” Certainly. Anytime two litigants settle, their agreement is contractual in nature and is enforceable in the same manner any contract is enforceable.

“That is to say, if the tort feasor refuses to rebut any affidavits and overcome the evidence against him/her, is there a (commercial) process the claimant can follow to obtain a "non-judicial" default judgment that would allow the claim for damages to be sold or pledged?” Definitely not. There is no such thing as a “non-judicial default judgment.” Unless the debt is secured with collateral, the only way to force anybody to pay anything is through the court system.

“From my own research, it appears that if a claimant can put in affidavit form 1) the proof of a mandatory duty 2) proof that this duty was breached and 3) proof that this breach caused injury, then he/she can proceed with whatever Administrative Remedy Process is available with where the tort feasor has a duty to respond, it should be enough.” Unfortunately, what you suggest is not possible. The general rule is that the tortfeasor has no duty to respond until summoned by the court. You can personally send 100 demand letters, affidavits, etc. to the tortfeasor, but he has no legal duty to respond in any way whatsoever, and therefore, his inaction is not an admission of guilt, nor does it create liability.

…then under UCC 3-419 the claimant can sign the tort feasor's name via accommodation… An “accommodation party” is a co-signor (like a co-signor for an auto loan). UCC 3-419 is not a means to obligate non-consenting people to an instrument, it merely states the liability that a co-signor has to an instrument.

Granted, since you haven't shared the details of the claim, nor the source for your information, I am just providing generalities. Can you share more details? What are your sources? What type of claim is this?

I know that’s not what you wanted to read, but I hope my answer was helpful. If so, then please remember to ACCEPT my post as that is the only way I will receive credit and compensation for my answer. Thank you and good luck!

DISCLAIMER: Please understand that the complexities of most legal problems cannot be sufficiently addressed in this setting. Accordingly, my post is intended as general information only, and should neither be construed as specific legal advice, nor as an adequate substitute for the retention of legal counsel.

 

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