Approximately five percent of all personal injury cases go to court, and the rest settle before trial. While attorneys on both sides may evaluate a case on a similar basis, there is no guarantee whatsoever that a jury will, and neither side wants to be surprised by an unfavorable verdict.
Trying a case in front of a jury usually brings a huge element of uncertainty into the process, which is why there is usually pressure on both the plaintiff’s and the defendant’s attorneys to settle the case before trial. But despite the risks, that doesn’t always happen.
Differing Opinions About the Value of the Case
Insurance companies are in business to make a profit, not to pay claims and maximize your settlement. If you think your case is worth half a million dollars but the other party is offering $10,000 to resolve it, the chance that your case will end up in trial goes up significantly. But if the defendant’s insurance company is being unreasonable and their offer will not fairly compensate you for your damages, a trial may be in order.
Your Lawyer Recommends Litigation
When choosing a personal injury lawyer, it’s important to know whether or not your lawyer has trial experience. Although settlement out of court is the preferred method of resolving cases, some lawyers have a reputation for always settling cases, and if insurance companies are aware of this, they may be inclined to make an especially low settlement offer, assuming that the lawyer will take the money to avoid going to trial. When choosing a lawyer, always ask whether he will be willing to take your case to trial, if that is your choice. If the answer is no, you might want to keep looking.
Turning down an offer in favor of litigation can be a tough choice, but your attorney will help you understand what your injury may be worth so you don’t end up with a low-ball settlement that doesn’t begin to cover your damages. If you’ve been injured and are looking for experienced legal representation, contact a personal injury lawyer at O’Keeffe O’Brien Lyson Foss online, or call 701-235-8000 or 877-235-8002 (toll-free) today.
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