If you’ve suffered injuries in a car wreck, the last thing you probably want to do is go to court to get fair compensation. The idea of a trial can be pretty overwhelming, especially when you are already dealing with a lot of physical, financial and emotional pain. Thankfully, in Florida and elsewhere, people can settle most car accident cases out of court so litigation may not be necessary.
In order to save time and money, a lot of people settle car accident cases through out-of-court negotiations. Litigation is generally only necessary if the party deemed responsible and his or her insurance provider are refusing to offer fair compensation.
Getting things started
After an auto accident, the responsible party’s insurance provider is likely to contact you in order to get further details about the crash. At this point, they may offer some sort of a settlement. For some, this settlement may seem sufficient. For others — especially those who suffered serious injury that will require years of care or cause life-long pain — it may not even come close to covering the damages sustained. It is okay to refuse. It does not mean you will walk away with nothing.
If you decide to refuse the initial settlement offer, you may do so in writing. Along with this refusal, it is possible to submit a demand for more. The insurance provider will then take the request into consideration and either refuse, counter or accept.
When it comes to knowing how much is enough or fair, this is not something you have to figure out on your own. With the assistance of legal counsel, you can get an idea of what is truly fair under the circumstances. Your attorney can then work on negotiating the terms of the settlement.
What if negotiations do not work?
As stated earlier, if parties cannot agree on a settlement through the negotiations process, this is when your case may need to go to trial. If this happens, legal counsel will walk you through it. Just know, depending on the complexity of your case, it can take some time to actually bring a case to trial and get through the trial process.
Not sure what to do?
When hurting and trying to adjust to your new normal following a car wreck, taking the initial settlement offer may be really tempting. If you are not sure what to do regarding negotiations or pursuing litigation, it is okay to ask questions. With help, you will be able to make a decision that will best serve your interests.