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For insurers, liability for bad faith failure to pay a claim hangs like a sword of Damocles. If a jury finds bad faith, the potential damages have no fixed upper limit. That’s one reason insurers have been happier to settle such claims rather than risk a high verdict or set a bad legal precedent for themselves, notes Robert I. Reardon Jr., a prominent New London, Conn., lawyer who has lectured on bad faith for the past 25 years.

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