Last Updated on August 13, 2023 by Tabraiz
When you have been involved in a car accident that was not your fault, you have two ways to seek compensation: settle with the negligent party’s insurance company or pursue the claim in court. The truth is, the highest percentage of personal injury claims settle before trial. Also, most car accident claims are resolved without filing a lawsuit in court.
As long as you lawyer up and have enough evidence to support your claim, you can negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance adjuster. However, there are advantages to pursuing the claim in court and letting the jury review your case. Well, look at both sides and the impact.
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Settling before filing a lawsuit
Some car accident victims prefer to try and settle a car accident claim before filing a lawsuit. If you are successful, you will enjoy advantages like:
- Get compensation faster to recover your losses.
- Avoid paying high attorney’s fees.
- Avoid appearing in court sessions.
- Avoid an unprecedented jury decision.
Most importantly, you should ask yourself whether the settlement amount the insurance company offers is worth it or worth pursuing the case in court. Keep in mind that if you do not have a solid case, you risk losing at trial and ending up with zero compensation. An experienced car accident attorney in Waukegan can examine your case to determine if it is worth pursuing it in court and the challenges involved.
A demand letter is the only way to settle the claim. However, before drafting the demand letter, you must gather enough evidence, including medical records, police statements, employment records if you missed work, witness testimonials, etc. The process may take time, but a car accident attorney can help you through.
When you gather the evidence, determine a reasonable settlement amount and write the demand letter. It is advisable to attach critical medical records in the demand letter and mail it to the fault party, insurance company, or lawyer. Then wait for the response. When they reply, the next step is settlement negotiations.
Pursuing the claim in court
If the defendant doesn’t respond to your demand letter or the settlement amount they offer is too low, you can pursue the claim in court. Another reason you may decide to pursue the claim in court is when the insurance company delays your agreed settlement amount, you have suffered injustice, or simply want the case handled by a jury.
Having an experienced car accident lawyer is valuable. They can navigate all the legal aspects of the case, ensuring they protect your interests while at it. The trial is the last step whereby a judge reviews the evidence and decides your case. Note that you and your attorney have the freedom to settle the case before it goes to trial if the defendant offers a reasonable compensation.
If the insurance company is willing to settle the case for reasonable compensation, there is no need to pursue the case in court. Regardless of the path you choose, having a car accident attorney by your side is vital to protect your interests and rights.