Will My Personal Injury Case go to Court?
This is one of the first questions many of our clients ask when they choose an attorney with the Jones Law Group to be their legal representative. It’s a very understandable question, of course. People want to know what to expect during the legal process, whether they’ve been hurt in a car accident or they have some other type of personal injury case.
The following information will give you a better idea if you’ll be able to obtain a settlement. Or if your case might find its way into a court of law. At the Jones Law Group, we won’t guarantee the outcome of your case. What we will promise, however, is that we’ll know how much your case is worth, and we’ll do everything we can to make sure you obtain the full and fair compensation to which you’re entitled.
Reasons that Personal Injury Cases Settle Out of Court
The vast majority – 90% or more – of personal injury cases never get to a trial because the plaintiff and defendant’s insurance company reach a settlement. These are some of the many reasons why settlements occur.
Defendant’s Insurance Company Knows Your Case Will Succeed in Court
The insurance company of the person who caused your accident might be well aware of the fact that it couldn’t win if it chose to take the case to trial. There’s simply too much strong evidence on your side, or the insurer doesn’t want to go up against the attorney you’ve chosen. The company realizes it would simply be a waste of money not to offer you a fair settlement.
There are some instances where a jury will award much more than the insurer would pay in a settlement. If the company doesn’t feel it can win, it wouldn’t want to risk losing even more by going to trial.
Settlement Amount is Low and Attorney’s Fees Don’t Justify Taking the Case to Trial
Insurance companies are incredibly sophisticated when it comes to calculating the dollar value of a personal injury case. You might be asking for a relatively small amount of money. This is relative to other cases the insurer deals with on a regular basis. It might decide that it just isn’t worth the expense to fight the case any further.
When a personal injury case goes to trial, attorneys on both sides will oftentimes spend thousands of hours performing many different tasks. They will review documents, interview witnesses, prepare pleadings, analyze evidence, and much, much more. By cutting these steps out and agreeing to a settlement, the insurer can avoid having to spend a lot of money on legal fees.
Your Attorney Can Argue a Satisfactory Settlement Offer
An insurance company may think it could win the case. But then again, it will risk losing much more money if the case goes to court. Juries can be notoriously unpredictable, and insurers will oftentimes decide they don’t want to take a chance. A skilled attorney will make a sound, strong argument on your behalf. One that’s based on solid evidence. This will convince the insurer that it will make much more sense to provide you with an equitable settlement.
It’s very important, however, that you stay away from law firms that are known as “settlement mills.” These are firms that take on a huge volume of clients, and then settle quickly so they can clear those cases out and obtain even more clients. These settlements are typically far below what the client actually deserves.
Reasons Personal Injury Cases go to Trial
The chances are overwhelmingly likely that you’ll eventually receive a fair settlement offer from the insurer. Especially if you have an experienced attorney working on your behalf. However, there is still the possibility that your case will go to trial. Whether you’ve been hurt in a slip and fall accident, or you’ve been injured in some other way due to another’s negligence, your attorney will have to be prepared to go to court.
Here are a few scenarios where a personal injury case will go to trial.
A Satisfactory Settlement Offer Isn’t Reached
It’s rare, but insurers will sometimes refuse to offer equitable compensation through a settlement. They will sometimes choose to take the risk of losing a case in court. As a result, they’ll likely have to pay much more money.
An attorney can tell you whether or not you should accept an insurance company offer, or fight for your rights in court. Your legal representative will be able to show you what juries typically award to clients with similar cases who win. That way you’ll have the information you need to determine whether or not the insurer’s offer is a reasonable one.
Your Attorney is Confident in Their Ability to Win
You could have such a compellingly powerful case that your attorney will advise you not to accept an insurer’s settlement offer – no matter how attractive you think it may be. The reason is that the attorney is convinced you will win – and very likely receive a great deal more money in the process.
When you choose an attorney, make sure you ask them whether or not they have trial experience. Not every attorney has it, and that could prove very costly to your case.
You Want to Hold the Defendant Accountable Publicly
Not only is there the chance that a jury would award much more money than you’d receive in a settlement, you might want to make sure the defendant faces accountability in a public setting. There are some clients who want to go to court, out of a matter of principle.
Is Jones Law Group Willing to Take my Case to Trial?
The answer to this question is a resounding, “Yes.” Our attorneys know how to help our clients find success, whether through a settlement or in a courtroom. We’ll do everything we can to obtain a fair settlement on your behalf, but we’ll be more than ready to go to trial if that proves necessary.