AN ACT TO AMEND THE RULES OF EVIDENCE REGARDING INSURANCE ADMISSIBILITY AND TO ALLOW FOR BINDING ARBITRATION IN CERTAIN CIVIL ACTIONS.
Repeals GS 8C-1, Rule 414, of the Rules of Evidence, which limited evidence offered to prove past medical expenses to evidence of the amounts actually paid to satisfy the bills that have been satisfied and evidence of the amounts actually necessary to satisfy the bills that have been incurred but not yet satisfied.
Amends GS 8C-1, Rule 411, to provide that evidence that a person was or was not insured against liability is not admissible upon the issue of whether the person acted negligently or wrongfully. Adds that the rule is not to be construed to infer that the term "insurance" as it is used in the rule, or the introduction of evidence of other forms of insurance, is barred by the rule (with the exception of parties introducing evidence of any payments made by insurance under the collateral source rule).
Enacts new GS 7A-37.2 to allow any named party to an action to elect binding arbitration when (1) an admission of negligence by all named defendants is signed by all named parties and (2) an express limitation by the named party with the burden of proof on damages associated with the action that all alleged damages must not exceed the amount in controversy for district court. Specifies that binding arbitration extinguishes the rights of named plaintiffs to any recovery beyond the insurance coverage limits pertinent to the action.