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We often hear talk of how litigious American society is and how many frivolous lawsuits are filed, but the fact of the matter is that, based on how our social and governmental institutions are structured, filing a personal injury lawsuit is often the only way that an injured victim will be able to obtain the financial recovery to pay for the health care costs they need and provide them with the funds necessary to support themselves and their families in light of their injuries. And anyone who has suffered serious physical injuries due to the negligence or wrongdoing of another knows that there is nothing frivolous about making sure the responsible parties are held accountable for the losses they have caused. That said, many plaintiffs are fearful or skittish about the possibility of going to a trial to win the recovery they deserve.
The fact of the matter is that 95% or more of personal injury suits are settled before they go to trial in front of a judge and jury. There are numerous reasons that this is case. Going to trial is expensive for defendants and time-consuming for plaintiffs, and so there is incentive on both sides to reach a settlement. Furthermore, trial is by its nature unpredictable as a jury of layperson strangers is essentially deciding the fate of both plaintiff and defendant, and so, again, that alone is an encouragement for both parties to work together to reach a solution that is mutually agreeable. Finally, experienced plaintiff and defense attorneys should have at least some sense of what to expect at trial with regards to findings on liability and damages, and so can reach a workable settlement in light of that shared understanding without going to trial.
That said, the parties may not be able to reach that understanding of what a fair settlement would be until they have completed various aspects of pretrial discovery such as exchanging records, taking depositions (out-of-court testimony made on the record) of the relevant parties and witnesses, and laying out their respective arguments in pre-trial motions and filings.
Despite all of that, the parties themselves (you as the plaintiff and the parties you are suing as the defendants) still hold all the power in deciding whether to go to trial (assuming the case survives pre-trial motions to dismiss). If the defendant is not willing to offer what you and/or your attorney think your lifetime damages are worth, and you are willing to risk the uncertainty of trial for the prospect of a substantial verdict (or settlement during the trial), then going to trial may remain your best option for full recovery.
Working with an experienced personal injury attorney who understands what your case is truly worth and has the skills to effectively pursue that through a settlement or verdict is the best way to proceed in determining whether going to trial is the right choice or not.
When you work with the legal team at the Law Offices of Scott Warmuth, you can expect a trusted legal advisor and guide at your side. By contacting us as soon as possible after your injury, we can immediately step into action to begin investigating the accident, gathering evidence, and working with your medical provider to build your best case for maximum recovery.
Our multilingual staff is here to help injured victims and their families across Los Angeles and Southern California. Contact us today to set up an initial consultation regarding your potential claim.