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  1. #1
    my home is offline Junior Member
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    Offer to settle admissable?

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? COLORADO

    Is it admissble in court if I have made an offer to settle out of court?
  2. #2
    JETX is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by my home View Post
    Is it admissble in court if I have made an offer to settle out of court?
    Any settlement offer is just that... an offer. It has no impact on potential liability or award.
  3. #3
    tranquility is offline Senior Member
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    The only thing I saw in state statutes was related to court and other costs after an offer is declined. (Some states codify what JETX said.)

    Still, while I agree with JETX in theory, it depends. While the number offered probably can't be admitted, what was said might be admissible. That's one reason why attorney's are a good idea in negotiations.

    If you said something like "I'm sorry I hit you, it was totally my fault as I was taking a hit of crack cocaine at the time. Would you settle for $100?" The fact you offered $100 would probably not be admissible. The rest?

    Info edit:
    Go with JETX and laitgo, not the above. But, see also my next post.
    Last edited by tranquility; 04-08-2010 at 04:53 PM.
  4. #4
    latigo is offline Senior Member
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    No. Neither the terms of an unaccepted offer of settlement nor any evidence relating to it would be admissible for any purpose whatsoever.

    The primary reason evidence of such a character is excluded is that if it were permitted it would discourage litigants from exploring efforts to compromise and settle. Efforts which the courts welcome.

    For example, say the defendant is being sued for negligently causing damage to the plaintiff’s property clamed to be in a certain dollar amount.

    Should the defendant makes a futile attempt to settle the claim for less that the amount demanded, evidence of the offer is inadmissible to as an admission of liability on the part of the defendant.

    By the same token an offer from the claimant to settle for less than demanded in the complaint, is not admissible as evidence of the amount of damages suffered.
  5. #5
    tranquility is offline Senior Member
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    My mistake. The Colorado rule of evidence comports exactly with Federal rule 408.

    Another info edit:
    Although, in one annotated code:

    --Situations in which someone acknowledges that a certain claim is valid or is valid to a certain extent, or statements to the effect: "I think your claim is worth ‘X’ number of dollars," are not offers within the meaning of CRE 408. Scott Co. of California v. MK-Ferguson, 832 P.2d 1000 (Colo. App. 1991).

    --No error in admitting statements by plaintiff that a representative of defendants stated that he felt plaintiff's claims had merit in certain amount where court stated that situations in which someone acknowledges that a certain claim is valid or is valid to a certain extent, or statements to the effect: "I think your claim is worth ‘X’ number of dollars," are not offers within the meaning of this rule. Scott Co. of California v. MK-Ferguson, 832 P.2d 1000 (Colo. App. 1991).
    Last edited by tranquility; 04-08-2010 at 04:53 PM.

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