Pros and Cons Of Settling a Case vs. Pursuing Litigation
Posted in Personal Injury on May 17, 2023
When a person sustains an injury caused by the careless or negligent actions of another individual or entity, they will likely take steps to recover compensation for their losses. For most injury cases, compensation will come through some form of settlement from an insurance carrier or at-fault party. However, sometimes, a personal injury lawsuit gets filed, and the case goes to court.
Here, we want to examine the pros and cons of settling an injury case versus pursuing litigation through the court system. If you have any questions about your particular situation, we strongly encourage you to reach out to a skilled personal injury lawyer in Tennessee who can walk you through this process and point you toward the path most likely to recover compensation. These cases are complex, but your attorney will assist you every step of the way.
Benefits of Settling a Claim
The vast majority of personal injury claims are settled before they go to court. However, that does not necessarily mean that is the best route for you. There are some benefits to settling a claim, though.
When a claim gets settled, this means that it probably did not take nearly as long as it would have had the case gone all the way to court. The main benefit of this is that individuals can receive their compensation and be done with the case without it having to be drawn out. There are sometimes when individuals need compensation quickly.
Another benefit of a settlement is that it does keep you from having to appear in court. The entire personal injury lawsuit process is time-consuming and stressful, but a settlement can help avoid the entire lawsuit process in some cases and result in less overall stress.
Downsides of a Settlement
Even though there are certainly benefits to a settlement, there are definitely some drawbacks as well. Settling the claim means that there is absolutely no way to go back and open up the case later period if the settlement is not sufficient or if an individual discovers that their injuries are more severe than they initially thought, they will essentially be out of luck when it comes to recovering additional compensation.
Insurance carriers are usually the ones making a settlement, and they will use various types of tactics to limit how much compensation they pay out. The entire business model of an insurance carrier is to take premiums and pay as little as possible in settlements. That is how they make a profit. When you are working to obtain a settlement, you have to battle against the insurance carrier’s profit desires.
An attorney is not always necessary for personal injury claims, but we strongly suggest working with an one to review any settlement offers and handle negotiations with difficult insurance carriers.
Benefits of Litigation
There are many benefits to actually taking your case to court and going through the litigation process. First, if your case is going this route, that means that the insurance carrier or the at-fault party refused to offer a fair settlement. If a fair settlement had come through, there would be no reason to take the case on toward the trial.
To put it bluntly, the main benefit of litigation is to obtain more compensation than you otherwise would receive. Litigation gives you and your attorney a chance to bring all of the evidence out into open court for a jury to look at and make a decision. Litigation gives you a chance to be heard.
Downsides of Litigation
There are certainly some downsides to litigation. Juries are an unknown. There is absolutely no guarantee that taking a case to trial will result in you recovering compensation for your claim. In fact, you could lose and receive nothing at all. If a jury trial is not successful, there will be no way for you to go back and recover compensation through a settlement.
Another downside of litigation is that these claims can take quite some time to resolve. It is not uncommon for personal injury cases to go on for well over a year or two before they reach a resolution.
Finally, when your case does go through the trial process, you will have to go to court and testify. Some people do not want to go through this entire stressful process, but it may be the only way to recover the compensation you need.
Work With an Attorney no Matter What
We strongly encourage you to speak to your attorney about the pros and cons of settling a case or taking the case all the way to trial. Your attorney will have experience handling both sides of these matters, and they can guide you toward the best route for recovering compensation.
Even if you are unsure about whether or not you want to work with an attorney, there is nothing wrong with receiving a free consultation. Most lawyers will offer a free consultation, and they will likely take your case on a contingency fee basis if they decide it is worth pursuing.
When a lawyer takes a case on a contingency fee basis, this means that you will not have to pay any legal fees until after your attorney recovers compensation on your behalf. Your Nashville personal injury attorney covers all of the costs of investigating the incident and litigating the case. The final legal fees you pay will be an agreed-upon percentage of the settlement or jury verdict. In the event your attorney is not successful with your claim, you will pay no legal fees at all.
The ultimate goal is to recover enough compensation for you to move forward with your life. This means coverage of all medical bills related to the incident, compensation for any property damage expenses and lost wages, as well as various types of pain and suffering damages. The total amount of compensation recovered, either through a settlement or through a jury verdict, will vary depending on the facts related to your specific claim.