Being hurt in an accident can be a trying experience. In addition to the injuries, the stress imposed from the aftermath can be difficult. Stress can arise from the uncertainty of whether you will be fairly compensated for the accident or not.
The best way to understand your chances of getting a settlement after an accident is to work with a personal injury attorney. We could review and analyze your situation and investigate further as needed to help identify what your case may be worth and the options available to recover as much of that amount as possible.
The most important factor in an injured person’s ability to receive a settlement after an accident is determining who is legally responsible for the accident. Although all accidents are unfortunate, the judicial system does not provide compensation to injured people in all circumstances.
Instead, an injured person can receive compensation only when someone else is at fault for the accident that led to the injury. The most common legal theory for accidents is called negligence, which occurs when a person’s failure to act within a reasonable standard of care in a particular situation causes someone else to be hurt.
Proof of negligence might include eyewitness testimony, photographs or videos of the accident, or reports from experts analyzing what likely caused the event. The more proof that an injured person has, and the stronger that proof is, the more likely the injured person is to receive compensation for their losses.
When an injured person has a strong argument that another is responsible for their injuries, there are multiple avenues available for pursuing that compensation. First is a settlement, which is an agreement that the person who caused the accident will pay the injured person a negotiated sum of money as compensation for their losses. Second is a judgment given by a judge that orders the person who caused the accident to pay the injured person a sum of money determined either by the judge or a jury.
Judgments can be helpful because they force the responsible person to pay the injured person whether they want to or not. But judgments require filing a lawsuit and undergoing a trial, an expensive process that could take multiple years in some instances. Moreover, trials are decided by either a judge or a jury, and there is always a risk that the judge or jury will determine the injured person should not receive any compensation for their losses.
Settlements can, in many situations, be more beneficial to both parties—they tend to be quicker, easier, and cheaper, and the parties have the final say over what the amount of compensation will be. The difficult part, of course, is that both the injured person and the negligent person must agree on what fair compensation is for the accident.
An injured person is more likely to receive a settlement after an accident when they can find common ground with the person who caused the accident. The chances for this increase if the injured person hires a lawyer who is a skilled negotiator, if the injured person does not seek to overreach for compensation relative to the losses they actually incurred, and if all parties can agree on the facts that led to the accident in the first place.
Most lawsuits settle without going to trial. An injured person’s chances of getting a fair settlement after an accident increase if they are able to create a strong argument that another person is responsible for their losses and if they are able to effectively negotiate an agreement with the person responsible for the accident. An experienced personal injury attorney could help you achieve both things.
Schedule an initial consultation with a lawyer today to learn more about the chances of getting a settlement after an accident.