If you recently suffered a serious injury as a direct result of another person’s reckless or careless actions, the idea of taking them to court and getting a civil judge to order compensation for your damages can certainly be an enticing one. In practice, though, it is much more common for personal injury claims to end outside of court with a private settlement agreement between the parties.
Your chances of getting a settlement after an accident can change a lot, depending on a number of factors. These can include how severe your injuries are, how much evidence you have proving someone else was at fault, or even the circumstances where you were hurt.
Personal Injury Claim Statistics
According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, over 96 percent of all personal injury lawsuits filed in state courts end with a private settlement rather than a civil court verdict. Of those that do go to court, the injured person only wins about half the time. Even those with the highest win percentage, auto accident plaintiffs, only win about 60 percent of the time—and in medical malpractice suits, plaintiffs win less than two of every 10 cases.
For these reasons, many injured plaintiffs, defense attorneys, and insurance companies prefer settling personal injury claims out of court. If you go to court, you have a 50/50 chance of winning; if you settle, you are guaranteed a settlement amount.
What’s more, settling is almost always much faster and cheaper than going to trial. Trials can be unpredictable, since the people ultimately deciding the outcome of the claim—the judge and jury—will not have any direct connection to the damages being sought or the financial position of the party expected to pay for those damages. One of the best things you can do to boost your odds of a favorable result from your case is to seek help from the experienced and reliable attorneys at OnderLaw.
What Factors Affect the Likelihood of a Settlement?
Generally speaking, the more evidence you have to prove that someone else is responsible for an accident, the more likely it is you’ll be able to negotiate a settlement from them. This may be because they want to avoid fighting a losing battle in court and potentially being made to pay even more after receiving an unfavorable verdict. The severity of injuries sustained can also play a big role in how likely a case is to end with a settlement, since injuries that result in severe non-economic harm may be easier to receive compensation for out of court.
That said, settling a case does not always result in a better outcome for the person seeking financial compensation, especially if they try to negotiate without support from a trusted lawyer. A 2017 study conducted by Martindale-Nolo Research says it all: 91 percent of surveyed claimants who retained legal counsel received a payout from their claim—an average of $77,600 in compensation; while about 50 percent of those without representation received an average payout of just $17,600.
Increase Your Chances of a Favorable Settlement With the Help of Our Accident Attorneys
At OnderLaw, we are proud of our commitment to helping injured people stand up to negligent people and businesses who hurt them and to holding negligent parties accountable for their actions. Our team is ready to fight for the fair and comprehensive compensation you need to recover from your accident-related injuries. Contact us today to get the dedicated legal representation you deserve.