Will My Case Go to Court?

Posted By Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney at Law

5 Jul. 2017

When people are injured in accidents, usually the first thing that occurs is they receive medical care. Whether they were injured in a car accident, or they slipped and fell at a retail establishment, or were attacked by their neighbor’s vicious Rottweiler, the costs begin to add up.

If it was a car accident, the injured can have tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of medical bills. Next, lost income and a ruined vehicle come into play.

Before you know it, a simple car accident turns the person’s life upside-down. More than that, it’s affected the victim’s entire family emotionally and financially. The victim couldn’t afford medical insurance, so who’s going to pay his medical bills? His car is wrecked, and now he has no way to get to work and provide for his family.

Does any of this sound familiar? Has an accident or injury snowballed into major medical bills? Have you lost a week, two weeks, or perhaps a month or more of work?

As you can imagine, the damages from an accident can add up quickly and when they do, injured parties come to the conclusion that they have to hire a personal injury attorney to seek compensation. You know you have to file a lawsuit – you have no other choice. Now you want to know, “Will my case go to trial?”

Most, But Not All, Claims Settle Out of Court

Will your case go to trial? Most likely no, it will not. The truth of the matter is that the vast majority, more than 90% of personal injury cases, settle out of court. There are many reasons for this, and believe it or not, it’s usually in the best interests of both parties to negotiate a settlement rather than go to trial.

For the defendant (the liable party), settling is in their best interests. One reason is because defendants have to pay their attorneys out-of-pocket. Hence, legal fees, lengthy depositions, independent investigations, expert witnesses, and accident reconstructions get very expensive.

But, settling is beneficial for plaintiffs (injured parties) as well. While plaintiffs often enter contingency-fee arrangements where there are no attorney fees unless they win, they still benefit from settlements. Why? Because, when a defendant wins, any and all fees and expenses are deducted from their settlement.

So, if a plaintiff’s case goes to trial, instead of settling, there will be a lot more fees involved, such as fees for accident reconstructions, expert witnesses, depositions, and of course there will be more legal fees involved as the case will be more labor-intensive for the plaintiff’s legal counsel.

All of those expenses are deducted from the plaintiff’s settlement, so it makes sense to drive down the costs of their case wherever possible.

Reasons to settle a claim:

  • Juries are unpredictable
  • There is no guarantee that a jury will award more money
  • Trials take much longer than settlements

While we strive to reach a fair settlement with insurance companies as swiftly as possible, we realize that this is not always practical. If the defendant is unwilling to accept liability or agree to a fair settlement, sometimes our clients are better-served by a full-blown jury trial.

Looking for a New Jersey personal injury attorney? Call Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney at Law today. We guarantee a 12 hour call back!

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