While it's true that the majority of accident and injury cases are settled out of court, the process of settling is one that is shrouded in mystery and misconceptions. Reaching a car accident settlement entails a series of negotiations that ensure the entire matter is resolved to the satisfaction of all parties involved. To help you better understand this process, below is the timeline of a typical settlement.
Deciding to Settle
The process begins with the plaintiff's decision to settle out of court. Common reasons for going this route include a general lack of evidence, discomfort with the idea of a trial, and not wanting to risk losing a case and recouping nothing. By pursuing a settlement, you can get compensation for medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
The other party will want to see evidence that backs up the plaintiff's claim. No one is going to hand over a large car accident settlement without seeing some quantifiable proof of damages. Medical records, the testimony of witnesses to the incident, and photos of the damage and the accident scene all make for compelling evidence.
Sending a Demand Letter
Next, your accident or personal injury lawyer will draft a demand letter. This document states what you want to see come out of the settlement as well as a description of your injuries. Including evidence at this point will only help your case as the other party considers whether to agree to negotiations.
Now the negotiations begin. If the other party accepts the plaintiff's invitation to settle, representatives from both sides come together to reach a mutually agreeable dollar amount. But don't be under any false impressions: this likely won't happen overnight. Depending on the details of your case and how much compensation you are seeking, it could take weeks or even longer to reach a conclusion.
If an insurer declines your offer to settle, appeal your denial to the next level up at the insurance company, which is usually a claims adjuster. If you are suing another driver for liability and they do not respond to the demand letter, file a complaint with a local court. They will inform the defendant of your intention to sue, which often opens up the negotiation process.
The attorneys at Jones & Jones, P.C., Attorneys at Law are here to represent you at every step of a car accident settlement. Since 1953, they have been offering quality legal help to people throughout the Andalusia, Alabama, area. Call (334) 222-3161, visit their website, or contact them on Facebook to set up a consultation today.
No representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers.