If you have no experience with lawyers, courts, or trials, you might have some dramatic but not necessarily accurate images in your head about what personal injury cases are based on movies and television shows. You might be thinking of the classic court scene in the movie, as the judge bangs a gavel and the stone-faced jury looks on while lawyers detail the facts of the case. While this sort of scenario might indeed become the reality in some cases, the great majority of personal injury cases actually settle out of court. Because we know that every case may go to trial, we work each case as if it actually is going to trial. That is important since we always need to take critical steps to work up the case fully for the best result.
Talk to any of The Cagle Law Firm’s personal injury lawyers in Jefferson City, MO, and they will tell you that settling out of court is sometimes advantageous to all parties involved in some cases. However, each case is specific to the injured person and the facts of the incident. Sometimes, an insurance company will make a fair offer. Again, each case is unique, and thorough preparedness makes a difference in whether the case is settled, mediated, or tried in court. There are many reasons the legal procedures require both sides actually to consider and evaluate offers and settlements.
Why Would I Settle Out of Court?
The idea of defendants in personal injury cases settling with plaintiffs out of court might seem counterintuitive to some. After all, why would the defendant not go all the way to trial and attempt to win? Let our Jefferson City personal injury lawyers detail the rationale for you of why defendants seek to settle rather than litigate. Here are three reasons many defendants settle personal injury cases before trial.
Settling Can Save Money
A defendant settling with a plaintiff means the defendant will pay the injured party an agreed-upon sum of money as damages. So, settling costs money, but sometimes, defending a case to trial is far more expensive. Why? Because defendants, like plaintiffs, need to hire lawyers, and those lawyers charge fees. Those fees add up for both defendants and plaintiffs, on top of the costs of traveling, retaining expert witnesses, and simply not being at work because of the trial. A defendant might decide these costs are not worth paying if a one-time settlement can be reached. As plaintiff lawyers, we are looking out for the best financial interest of our client, the injured party. At times, the defendant’s insurance company will offer a fair number, and a settlement is made after consultation with all clients.
Settling May Reduce Publicity
If you have been injured due to the negligence of a well-known entity–say, a large manufacturer of the defective product that hurt you–and your accident lawyer in Jefferson City, MO, wants to take your case to trial, you may find the defendant in your case quickly decides to settle with you. But, more often than not, if we are talking about an auto accident, the insurance carrier is not too worried about publicity from one case. Ultimately, the insurance company for the defendant evaluates its liability and policy in an attempt to pay out the lowest amount possible to resolve the claim.
Settling Can Be More Controllable
Another reason a defendant might want to settle while your personal injury attorneys in Jefferson City, MO, are willing to go all the way to trial is that settling allows the parties to control the terms of the settlement. In trials, unpredictable circumstances can occur at any time. Jury decisions can be surprising in both good and bad ways. Depending on the strength and facts of a case, the defense may prefer to pay a little higher settlement to avoid the uncertainty at trial. Again, each case comes down to the injured person, the severity of the injury, and the facts of how the injury occurred.
Hire a Jefferson City Personal Injury Attorney
Whether your personal injury case goes to trial or ends with a settlement, The Cagle Law Firm will fight to win you the compensation you deserve following an injury that wasn’t your fault. Make us your first call when you need a Jefferson City personal injury attorney, and we will review your situation in a free consultation. If you have a case, we will fight for you until we win.
Contact us today to get started on your journey toward the recovery that is rightfully yours.