Data published by the U.S. Department of Justice indicates that 97% of personal injury cases are settled before they ever reach the courtroom.
There are several reasons for this.
First, going to trial is expensive. Lawyers’ fees can rack up quickly, and both sides also have to pay for expert witnesses and other costs associated with taking an injury claim to court.
Additionally, going to trial can be a risky proposition. There’s no guarantee that a judge or jury will rule in your favor, no matter how strong your case may be. And even if you win, the amount of money you’re awarded may be less than what you would have received if you had settled out of court.
When Trial May Be the Best Option for a Personal Injury Case
There are a few situations where going to trial may be the best option.
- You and the at-fault party are far apart on settlement offers
If you’ve made a reasonable settlement offer but the at-fault party is refusing to budge, then taking your case to trial may be the only way to get the compensation you deserve.
- The at-fault party denies any responsibility for your injuries
If the at-fault party denies that they did anything wrong, then going to trial may be necessary to prove their liability. This would involve presenting evidence and witnesses to show that the at-fault party owed you a duty of care and that they breached that duty, which led to your injuries.
- The at-fault party has a history of bad faith tactics
If the at-fault party in a car accident or property liability case has been uncooperative or unreasonable throughout the claims process, this may indicate that they will not be willing to negotiate in good faith to reach a settlement. In this case, going to trial may be the best way to get fair compensation.
- You have significant injuries that are expected to have a long-term or permanent impact on your life
If your injuries are serious and will impact your quality of life long-term, you may want to consider going to trial to get the full compensation you deserve. This is because it can be difficult to quantify the value of these types of injuries, and a judge or jury may be more likely to award a larger amount of money if they can see the full extent of your injuries.
- The statute of limitations is about to expire
With California’s personal injury statute of limitations, you generally have two years from the date of your accident to file a lawsuit. If settlement negotiations have dragged on and you’re getting close to this deadline, going to trial may be your only option.
Each personal injury case is unique, and there’s no one-size-fits-all answer when it comes to whether or not you should go to trial. Ultimately, the decision of whether or not to take your case to court should be made after careful consideration and consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney.
If you have been injured in an accident and are considering your legal options, contact our law office for a free consultation. Our experienced personal injury lawyers can review your case and help you determine whether going to trial is the best option. Call us today at 888-414-3898 or send us an email at email@example.com.