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an evidentiary hearing to determine the culpability of Buffalo Grove’s conduct and the extent of

Cellini’s brain injuries. The circuit court is in “the best position to decide what type of hearing is

necessary to fully adjudicate the issue of good faith,” and as discussed, the circuit court in this case

had ample facts before it and time to determine each party’s relative culpability regarding whether

the settlement agreement was entered into in good faith. See Johnson, 203 Ill. 2d at 136, 784 N.E.2d

at 822 (although the circuit court did not conduct an evidentiary hearing, “[t]here is no reason to

believe that the [circuit] court was unable to determine, from the facts before it, the parties’ relative

culpability”). We agree with Buffalo Grove’s contention that, to require the circuit court to hold an

evidentiary hearing regarding the relative liabilities and fault of the parties before every ruling on

a motion for a good-faith finding would, in essence, amount to a “bench trial” on the merits of the

case before the case is actually tried. This would defeat the purpose of a settlement agreement in

which the settling defendants do not admit fault.

The U-Haul entities further argue that the circuit court failed to weigh factors such as the

probabilityof recovery, the defenses raised andBuffalo Grove’s potential legal liability in approving

Buffalo Grove’s settlement agreement with Cellini. Instead, they contend, the circuit court

“generically stat[ed] that ‘really there’s simply no basis in the record for anything other than a good

faith finding at this point’ and issu[ed] an oral ruling from the bench.” The U-Haul entities request

that a limited evidentiary hearing should be granted for the circuit court to weigh those factors.

“The amount of a settlement must be viewed in relation to the probability of recovery, the

defenses raised, and the settling party’s potential legal liability.” Johnson, 203 Ill. 2d at 137, 784

N.E.2d at 823. Further, “the disparity between the settlement amount and the ad damnum in the


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