Our last post explained what usually goes on during the mediation of a personal injury case. This form of dispute resolution outside of court can save time and money while ensuring privacy and greater flexibility. Nevertheless, it is often very difficult to decide whether to accept the settlement being offered or to accept the risk of taking your case to court.
If you are faced with this difficult decision, read on for some factors to consider before deciding not to settle your personal injury case outside of court:
- Your case is strong and you have a high chance of winning in court: Taking a weak case to trial would be a bad gamble, but if you have a strong case, you are likely to win more compensation by taking it to court. In deciding whether to settle or not, the strength of your case is the most important factor to consider. Of course, good personal injury lawyers will know more than you do about the laws connected to your case and about how the judges and juries are likely to react. If your attorney thinks your chances of winning are high, you probably should not settle out of court.
- The defendant’s offer is too low: You and your personal injury lawyer should discuss the lowest offer you are willing to accept before settlement discussions begin. You must consider such expenses as medical bills and lost wages before deciding what would be fair and acceptable settlement terms. If the opposing party’s final offer is too low for compromise, it might be best to take your case to court to win more compensation.
- Your case affects society: Sometimes a case affects many people or may challenge legal limits. Settling outside of court is a private affair and cannot create a legal precedent. If your personal injury was, for example, due to the negligence of a company, taking the case to court instead will let others know how the company affected you and how it may harm them as well.
Ultimately, the decision to settle your case or take it to court is up to you and not a personal injury lawyer, but you do not have to face this difficult decision on your own. If you were the victim of a personal injury, reach out to the experienced attorneys at Colley & Colley, LLP to set up a free consultation so that we can work through your options with you to help you win the best compensation you possibly can.