Settlements vs. Lawsuits: What's the Difference?
It is, or it should be, the goal of every victim of an accident or injury and every attorney to settle a case fairly and avoid a lawsuit, if possible. Lawsuits, while necessary, are slow and expensive. If you believe in the adage “Justice delayed is justice denied,” then you understand why a lawsuit is not necessarily a good thing and, certainly, not the goal, but it is often necessary in order to force an insurance company to pay what it owes.
Know What Your Case is Worth & Whether a Trial Might Be To Your Advantage
So, why do lawsuits have to be filed? If an insurance company under evaluated your claim, and if they refuse to negotiate, mediate or engage in any activity to increase their offer to a sum that is fair and compensates you for your injuries, expenses and losses, you have no choice but to file a lawsuit. To be fair, if a claimant over estimates his or her losses or believes that they are entitled to more money than their case or claim would be worth before a jury, the insurance company will hold the line and offer what they believe to be fair or reasonable, and the claimant will then have to file a lawsuit if he or she wants more.
In the current environment, which is to say a very conservative environment, insurance companies have been emboldened by juries who have become more and more conservative, and are less and less willing to render verdicts favorable to a plaintiffs [you.] To the insurance company claims departments, they are willing to take the risk of making very low offers and forcing claimants to file lawsuits. They believe that by forcing more people to file lawsuits, and increasing the risks and expenses to every person making a claim, people will be less likely to file claims; they will be more likely to accept low insurance company offers; and that the jury verdicts will be low enough most of the time to make this business practice profitable for them. Of course, there will be juries that render verdicts higher than what the insurance company wants to pay. However, there are enough claimants that are unwilling to fight for their rights and fight the insurance companies, that the money they save on “lowballing” the vast majority of claims is more than enough to pay for the favorable jury verdicts for those people willing to fight, and they still make handsome profits.
Hire an Attorney With the Experience Required For Trial
Sadly, the insurance industry and their lawyers have become very good at this unfair claims practice. Sadder still is the fact that it has taken years for plaintiffs’ personal injury lawyers to understand the dynamics of this practice and adapt their trial skills to this environment. Most plaintiffs’ personal injury lawyers are still behind the curve here fighting the good fight but losing all too often.
The best personal injury lawyers have now become very skilled at dealing with the misconceptions and misunderstandings of juries in general and the jurors in particular and have now leveled the playing field, thus giving their clients a fair shot at a fair verdict.
Feel free to contact us, or submit your personal injury case for a free review. We value your privacy. Your submission is confidential. We do not share your information with anyone. We're located in Woodland Hills, and serve the entire Los Angeles County area. Call 818 716-6400 today.