Personal Injury
LexInter | February 3, 2022 | 0 Comments

Should You Settle Or Go To Court For Serious Personal Injury?

You or your loved one may have suffered a serious personal injury due to someone else’s fault from a road traffic accident, work-related accident, or medical negligence. The injury may have left you disfigured, with some parts of your body not functioning as before, or you may even have suffered the loss of mental abilities. Thus, you’re entitled to seek compensation for economic and non-economic damages related to your injury. Moreover, damages may include present and future expenses and treatment, pain and suffering, and diminished quality of life.

Due to the complex nature of the serious personal injury, future aspects of both economic and non-economic damages have to be factored in when damages are being assessed. This sometimes can be difficult.

As you pursue compensation for your injury and ensure that you’re appropriately compensated, how will you determine which way to go? Because in a personal injury case, you’ll either settle out of court or let the court decide what damages you’ll be paid. At this stage, it will be crucial to engage the services of an experienced personal injury lawyer, who’s conversant with such matters, to guide you on the best course to take. You can check out joestephenslaw.com to learn more about the top-rated personal injury lawyer.

Personal injury claims start with the injured party writing a demand letter which also acts as a notice to the liable party for compensation. The letter usually entails the events leading to the injury, lists the injuries sustained, and expected compensation. The demand letter also includes treatment documents and medical reports for sustained injuries.

What’s A Settlement?

What’s A Settlement

When the liable party receives the demand notice, their lawyer or insurance will engage your lawyer to attempt an out-of-court settlement. This could happen before or after a suit is filed in court, or even when the matter has been heard, but the final verdict hasn’t been given.

Your lawyer will negotiate with the representative of the liable party to reach a reasonable settlement that reflects your injuries. If parties agree on a settlement, you’ll be required to discharge the responsible party from any further obligation related to the claim and withdraw the suit filed.

Serious personal injury, also called catastrophic injury, requires lawyers who have vast experience negotiating complex claims. They need expertise, mainly when calculating future projections relative to the injury. If such projections are not properly captured in the lawsuit, you might not be adequately compensated.

Settlements usually take a shorter time than trials.

What’s A Trial?

A lawsuit goes through different phases.

Complaint and answer phase: A complaint document is usually prepared, which comprehensively covers the events leading to the injury, details of your injuries, details of the negligence of the liable party, and the amount of compensation you expect to receive. The liable party must answer the complaint within a certain period, usually 30 days.

Discovery phase: This is where documents are requested and exchanged between parties, testimonies are compiled, and witnesses answer depositions under oath.

Motions phase: At this point, the liable party can file a motion to move the court to dismiss sections of your claim or entirely. Your lawyer will be required to file an answer to the motion within a certain period to refute the motion.

TRIAL

After that, a hearing date is usually set for parties to start presenting their arguments regarding the suit. A court trial can take months or even years before the conclusion. When choosing a lawyer, be sure that they aren’t settlement mills but are resilient enough to go through a court trial.

To Settle Or To Go For Trial

  • Even though you’re assured of quick payment in a settlement, there’s a risk of being under-compensated. Parties in a bid to settle faster tend to compromise on many issues, especially on pain and suffering. On the other hand, even if a trial takes a long time to conclude, you’ll be assured that all aspects of your injury will be taken into account. The input of professional expertise in a trial might also work in your favor because nothing will be downplayed.
  • In a settlement, once you get your compensation, you cannot go back to the table to renegotiate, even if new aspects of your injuries arise. But a trial offers you the advantage of appealing.
  • A trial will give you inner satisfaction that justice has been served and that the liable party is punished for their wrongdoing.

Conclusion

What Is a Personal Injury Claim

Most personal injury cases end up as settlements because people prefer quick settlements and fear the uncertainty of trials. But it is worthy of note that some matters are best left for the court to decide. Serious personal injury claims sometimes present complex issues which can’t be determined in settlements and are therefore downplayed. Before you decide to go for a quick settlement, think of the future aspects of your injury.

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LexInter

Lexinter Law, with a team of dedicated authors who strive to provide you with all the relevant and actionable tips on the legal aspect of your life. Our goal is to educate you so that you can make legal action with ease, or find the right person who can help you with your unique personal legal dilemma. Take care!

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