If you watch enough television, you probably think that most personal injury cases go to trial. You can envision yourself standing in front of a judge, with a jury of your peers to the side. You put on a brilliant case without the help of a Los Angeles injury lawyer. As soon as you wrap up your closing argument, the judge raps their gavel and declares that you win. The jury awards you millions of dollars, and you walk out of court a very wealthy person. Now, it’s time to wake up from this fantasy. In the real world, things work quite differently than you may think.
In the real world, less than 5% of all personal injury cases actually go to trial. That’s because most personal injury attorneys in Los Angeles realize that it’s much better to settle. Nobody wants to go through the expensive and time-consuming process of a trial. Not when the matter can be resolved so much more quickly and easily. Here, we’ll explain the various reasons why it’s in your best interest to settle your personal injury case. We will also discuss the downsides of taking your case to trial.
If you still have questions after reading this article, give us a call. We can always schedule your free, initial consultation.
It Can Take Years for Your Personal Injury Case to Go to Trial
When you file a personal injury lawsuit, it can take years to get to trial. It can take a few months just to get your complaint filed and served on the other party. Then you have to wait for the judge to hear motions and other side issues. By the time mediation comes around, you could be more than a year in.
The civil court judges do everything they can to avoid having a case go to trial. Their dockets are clogged with cases that have been dragging on for years. The last thing they want to do is add another case to their growing list. In a way, the judge’s hope that your case will settle is one of the reasons it can take forever to get to trial. Your personal injury attorney in Los Angeles may have to attend mediation and arbitration – anything to get the matter resolved without the judge’s interference.
There’s Always the Chance That You Could Lose if You Went to Trial
One thing a lot of our clients don’t think about is the chance of them losing at trial. Just because you think you have a strong case, that doesn’t mean the judge will agree with you. Even if your Los Angeles injury lawyers think you have a strong case, that doesn’t mean anything. You have no idea what will happen at trial. The judge may not allow some of your evidence in at trial. Or the defendant’s attorney may have a piece of evidence that hurts your case. Anything can happen.
If you do find yourself on the losing end at trial, you’ll walk away with nothing. While, technically, you could file an appeal, most Los Angeles injury lawyers don’t do this. If your evidence wasn’t strong enough to win the first time around, chances are, it won’t be enough the second time around either.
Trials are Very Expensive
Your personal injury attorney in Los Angeles will explain to you just how expensive it can be to go to trial. Not only will you have to pay for the regular costs associated with a lawsuit, but you’ll have to pay additional costs as well. Some of the things you’ll have to pay for if you go to trial include the following:
- Expert witnesses
- Travel expenses
- Copies, postage, and supplies
- Filing fees
All of these things cost money. And, not surprisingly, it is expensive to take a case all the way to trial. Even if you win, you’ll have to reimburse your Los Angeles injury lawyers when you’re paid. Correction – you’ll have to reimburse them if you’re paid. Just because you win, that doesn’t mean you’ll ever see a dime.
You May End Up with a Worthless Judgment
One of the benefits of settling your personal injury case is that you’ll walk away with a lump sum of money. You won’t have to wait for the defendant to sell a major asset. Nor will you have to pay an attorney to domesticate the judgment.
With a settlement, you usually have your money within thirty to sixty days. There’s very little chance of the defendant backing out of the settlement. When they do pay, it will be via one lump sum. Your personal injury attorney in Los Angeles will receive the settlement check from the other party’s lawyer. They will then take their fee right off the top. After they pay any outstanding costs and fees, you will receive the difference.
If your case goes to trial, you may not receive all your money at once. Plus, you’ll have to pay your attorney a much higher percentage. With the extra time, money, and resources involved with trial, your Los Angeles injury lawyers will be paid at least 40%, rather than the standard 33%. This should make a difference to you if nothing else does.
Trust that Your Personal Injury Attorney in Los Angeles Has Your Best Interests in Mind
It can be hard to put your trust into a stranger. Our personal injury attorneys in Los Angeles understand that better than you may think. However, our associates have decades of combined experience handling cases like yours. Not only do they know the law, but they also know how the insurance companies operate. Your Los Angeles injury lawyer will do whatever they can to get you the money you deserve. If this means they settle your case, even better. This means you’ll have your money sooner than if you had to wait for trial. It also means you’ll get a lump sum. All you have to do is call and schedule your free, initial consultation with one of our Los Angeles injury lawyers.
Since we don’t charge anything upfront, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.