When you’re hurt in an accident caused by someone else’s carelessness, you typically have two options for getting compensation from the at-fault party: accept a personal injury settlement out of court or go through (or at least begin) the civil litigation process.
While a lawsuit may end up costing you more money in the long run than a settlement, the great majority of personal injury claims settle far before trial, and sometimes before a lawsuit is ever filed. Let’s look at it more closely.
Understanding Personal Injury Settlements
When an insurance adjuster or a defendant (the person or corporation you’re suing) offers you, the injured person, money, it’s called a settlement. When is this most likely to occur?
Almost whenever you want:
- A settlement offer might be made before a personal injury lawsuit is filed, but after a prospective claim has arisen.
- It can be made after a lawsuit has been filed and a trial has commenced, as long as no final verdict has been issued.
- Some settlements are struck after a trial, while the jury is still deliberating, since one or both parties may decide that the “sure thing” of a settlement is preferable to the “uncertainty” of a trial.
The plaintiff must surrender any possible claims against the defendant originating from the underlying accident or incident once a settlement agreement is reached.
Insurance companies and Settlements
When insurance companies are engaged in personal injury claims, which is nearly usually the case, settlements are virtually always offered. Insurers have the financial resources to settle claims and, as part of their business model, they plan to pay a specific amount of claims. Insurers are also risk-averse, and they don’t want to entrust their financial well-being to an unreliable jury, especially given the high expenses of pursuing a personal injury case to trial.
Why Settlements for most cases?
1] Defendants can control risks and legal costs
If the defendant thinks he or she is to blame for the accident that resulted in the injury claim, or if responsibility is unclear but the plaintiff’s injuries are serious, the defendant may not want the case to go before a sympathetic jury that may award the plaintiff a big damages judgment.
2] Plaintiff can avoid a protracted trial
Trials can last months, and if there are any appeals, the outcome of the case may be uncertain. A plaintiff may not want to wait that long for financial relief, or may not be up to putting on a show, presenting evidence, and doing all else required to win a court war.
Getting the right compensation in a personal injury lawsuit can be quite complicated. hence, it is recommended that you hire a personal injury lawyer in case you or your loved one is a victim. Your personal injury lawyer will not only prove the fault of the defendant but also ensure that you get compensated adequately.
Autrey Law Firm is a leading personal injury law firm. We have a team of experienced lawyers who are knowledgeable about all aspects of personal injury laws and offer the best representation.