October 10

Auto Accidents: Should I Settle or Go to Trial?

If you’ve been hurt in a car accident in Pasadena because of someone else’s mistake or negligence, the question of whether to go to trial is serious. It might feel like an easy question, but there is no one-size-fits-all answer. 

About 95% of such cases are resolved with a settlement before going to court, but that doesn’t mean settling is always the right choice. 

To make the best decision for your situation, it’s wise to talk to an experienced Pasadena vehicle accident lawyer. They can assist you in understanding settlement procedures as well as your prospects of success in court.

This blog will help you explore the issues so you can make an informed choice when dealing with your personal injury claim.

Pros and Cons of Settling an Auto Accident Claim

Advantages of Settling

1. Faster Resolution

Opting for a settlement can significantly speed up the process. Unlike lengthy court trials that can take months or even years, settlements out of court offer a quicker path to compensation, helping you receive help sooner.

2. Predictable Outcomes

When you settle out of court, you have a clear and guaranteed outlook of the amount in damages you’ll receive. In contrast, trials can be uncertain and unpredictable, making settlements often a more reliable choice.

3. Lower Legal Costs

Settling your claim typically incurs fewer legal expenses. With fewer formalities, paperwork, and no trial preparation, you can save on legal costs. Your Pasadena personal injury attorney may charge you less since there’s less need for extensive legal services.

Disadvantages of Settling

1. Potentially Lower Compensation

When you settle out of court, there’s a risk of receiving less compensation than you might have received through a trial, particularly in cases of severe injuries where insurance coverage may fall short.

2. Pressure to Accept Inadequate Offers

Settlement negotiations can sometimes lead to pressure from the other party or their insurance company to accept offers that don’t adequately cover your damages.

3. May Not Address Non-Economic Damages

Settling might focus on economic damages, such as medical bills and lost wages, but it might not fully address non-economic damages like pain and suffering.

Pros and Cons of Going to Trial

Advantages of Going to Trial

1. Potential for Higher Compensation

Trials can result in larger awards compared to what insurance companies typically offer in settlements out of court, ensuring you receive the full extent of the damages you deserve, especially when damages exceed policy limits.

2. Public Accountability

Court proceedings bring public attention, holding the at-fault party accountable for their negligence or wrongdoing. This can provide a greater sense of justice and closure for the injured party.

3. Access to Legal Resources

Going to court gives you access to legal resources, including expert witnesses and the expertise of a skilled Pasadena car accident lawyer, to build a strong case and present your claim effectively.

Disadvantages of Going to Trial

1. Lengthy and Uncertain Process

Trials can be lengthy, extending your case’s timeline for years. The outcome of a trial can be uncertain, which can add greater stress and anxiety.

2. Higher Legal Costs

Taking your case to court often results in higher legal fees and costs, as a portion of your awarded damages is used to cover attorney fees and litigation expenses.

3. Emotional Toll on Parties Involved

Court proceedings can be emotionally draining for all parties involved, as they often require reliving the accident and dealing with the stress of the legal process.

Factors to Consider When Deciding

  • Severity of Injuries

The seriousness of your injuries is vital. Severe injuries might require a trial to secure adequate compensation for medical expenses and suffering, as settlements might not cover the full extent of damages.

  • Liability and Fault

Evaluating who is at fault and liable is crucial for understanding the strength of your case. If you have a strong liability case, settling might not be as appealing.

  • Insurance Policy Limits

Knowing the insurance policy limits of the at-fault party is essential. If these limits cannot cover your damages, pursuing a trial might become necessary to seek additional compensation.

  • Willingness to Negotiate

Both your willingness and the other party’s willingness to negotiate should impact your decision. If negotiations reach a deadlock, going to court might be the only way to resolve the dispute.

  • Long-Term Consequences

Think about the long-term implications. Settling offers a quicker resolution, while a trial may result in a larger award but more time and emotional stress during the process. Consider what suits your circumstances and needs best with the guidance of a Pasadena vehicle accident lawyer.

Negotiating with Insurance Companies

When engaging in negotiations, remember to employ effective strategies for claiming personal injury. Be cautious of lowball offers from insurers, as they might attempt to offer less than what your case is worth. Don’t negotiate alone. Reach out to an experienced Pasadena law firm for legal representation to ensure your rights are protected during personal injury lawsuits.

Preparing for Trial

  • Hiring an Attorney

Seek a skilled Pasadena car accident lawyer to provide legal expertise and guide you through the process.

  • Building a Strong Case

Collaborate with your attorney to gather evidence, witnesses, and documentation to support your claim.

  • Understanding the Court Process

 Familiarize yourself with the legal procedures and steps involved, from filing to the trial itself.

  • Jury Selection

Pay attention to the process of selecting a jury, as it can significantly impact the outcome of personal injury lawsuits.

Making Your Decision

Making the decision to settle or go to court for your personal injury claim is a crucial choice for your case. To arrive at the right choice, it’s important to follow a structured approach. 

  • Assess your Priorities: Consider your immediate needs for compensation and the long-term impact of your decision. 
  • Consult with Legal Counsel: Reach out to knowledgeable personal injury lawyers as they can provide insight into the likelihood of winning your personal injury lawsuit.
  • Consider the Risks and Benefits: Carefully weigh the risks and benefits of each option, keeping in mind the potential outcomes and emotional toll.

Making an informed decision when faced with the choice of settling or going to court for your personal injury claim is of great importance. If you are looking for professional advice in Pasadena, CA don’t hesitate to reach out to Grigoryan Blum and Grigoryan. 

At Grigoryan Blum and Grigoryan, we provide our clients with accessible and attentive service throughout the entire process. We prioritize a personalized approach for every case, treating our clients with the consideration and care they deserve. We ensure that your voice is heard and your rights are protected. 

Contact Grigoryan Blum and Grigoryan today for effective representation in your personal injury case. 

Click here for our complete guide to hiring a Pasadena car accident lawyer.

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30 North Raymond Avenue, Suite #514
Pasadena, CA 91103
United States