When Does a Car Accident Case Go to Trial?
Most car accident injury cases are settled out of court without involving a judge or jury. In fact, by some estimates, only about five percent of personal injury cases go to trial. Still, there are some reasons why a particular case might be filed as a personal injury lawsuit.
How Does a Car Accident Claim Become a Lawsuit?
Generally speaking, insurance companies may be quick to offer a settlement, especially if they know that the actions of their client have opened them up to liability. The insurance company may calculate that settling the case out of court will save them money in damages as well as in legal costs associated with litigation.
However, a claimant may be informed enough to know that the offer presented is insufficient to address the damages inflicted in the accident. Often this knowledge is shared with the claimant by a lawyer well versed in car accident litigation and the compensation amounts that are actually suitable for the physical injuries and other losses suffered in the accident.
Armed with this useful information, a claimant and their lawyer may decline to accept the settlement offer, knowing they are in a position to seek a better deal. If the insurance company thinks they have a good chance of winning the case, they may hold out on increasing their offer or accepting a counter-proposition.
When this happens, and both sides think they have a good shot at convincing the court that they are in the right, the stalemate may force the claimant to sue. Once the court gets involved, both sides run the risk of a judge finding that the other side makes a more compelling case.
What are the Reasons Cases are Settled before Going to Trial?
Neither side knows for sure which way a case will be decided. A settlement is much more certain. Reaching a pre-trial settlement eliminates the risk of either side losing in court. Avoiding a trial also reduces legal costs and brings the process to an end more quickly.
What are Some Reasons a Case Might Proceed to Trial?
If the insurance company thinks they have a good chance of winning the case, they may make a low settlement offer on purpose, knowing that the claimant does not have a strong case. The claimant may jump at the chance to get a low settlement rather than nothing if the verdict goes against them.
The insurance company may like their chances enough to tempt the claimant to balk. The insurance company may be perfectly willing to dangle a small settlement, knowing that they could save on court fees and other costs, if the low offer is accepted.
On the flip side, the settlement expectations of the claimant may be seen as exorbitant, causing the insurance company to take their chances in court.
Washington DC Car Accident Lawyers at the Law Offices of Duane O. King Represent Clients Suing for Damages after a Serious Automobile Accident
If you sustained a serious injury in a car accident, you should be able to receive fair compensation for your losses. If the insurance company handling the claim makes an offer, you should speak with a lawyer knowledgeable in personal injury cases who can give you an idea of what kind of compensation would cover the full range and long-term impacts of your injuries. The Washington DC car accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Duane O. King can help you understand your rights, assess what amount makes for a fair settlement, and secure the compensation you deserve. We can be by your side during settlement negotiations and see you through a lawsuit if one becomes necessary. Call us at 202-331-1963 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Washington, DC, we work with car accident victims in Prince George’s County, including Laurel, Beltsville, Adelphi, College Park, Greenbelt, Mitchellville, Woodmore, Greater Upper Marlboro, Springdale, Largo, Bowie, Capitol Heights, District Heights, Forestville, Suitland, and Seat Pleasant, Clinton, Oxon Hill, Temple Hills, and Fort Washington.