Differences Between Insurance Claims and Personal Injury Lawsuits
After a personal injury, victims generally have two options for pursuing compensation for their injuries and damages: filing an insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit. While there are some similarities between these two methods, there are also some significant differences.
You can learn more about personal injury insurance claims and lawsuits in a free consultation with a Savannah personal injury lawyer at Roden Law. We are here to answer your questions and discuss how we may be able to assist you during your time of need.
The consultation is confidential and comes with no obligation to take legal action. That means there is no risk to you in contacting us.
Insurance Claim vs. Personal Injury Lawsuits
The main difference between these two methods of pursuing compensation is an insurance claim involves you working with the at-fault party’s insurance company, while a lawsuit involves you taking the at-fault party to court to attempt to secure a verdict from a jury.
In an insurance claim, you and your attorney are negotiating with the insurance company. In a lawsuit, you present a case to a jury, which can decide if you should be awarded compensation and how much.
While the jury makes its decision based on the case that is presented, an insurance company is always looking for a way to pay out the least possible amount of compensation. The insurance company will look for any way to deny your claim. For example, an insurance company may say you are at fault for your injuries, or your injuries are related to a preexisting medical condition.
An insurance claim often precedes a lawsuit – your attorney works toward securing a favorable settlement from the insurance company, and if that fails, he or she files a lawsuit. However, sometimes courts order mediation or arbitration before a trial occurs. The discovery phase often precedes mediation. This is where both sides seek information about the case. Both sides can request information from the other.
The insurance company conducts its own investigation of your injury and decides how much compensation it wants to award. Your attorney can negotiate, but in the end, the insurance company must agree for you to obtain the compensation you want. In a lawsuit, your attorney can present your case and work to refute claims made by the other side. Then, a decision is made by the jury, which does not have the insurance company’s financial incentive to pay out the least possible amount of compensation.
Often, the possibility of a lawsuit is enough to make an insurance company agree to a settlement. The insurance company wants to avoid the added expense of a trial. Sometimes, after a lawsuit is filed, the insurance company decides to settle, rather than go through a trial.
This is one of the reasons why it is important to hire an attorney with courtroom experience who is prepared to take a case to trial. You also want an attorney who has secured verdicts in the courtroom. Insurance companies often know the attorneys who do not take cases to trial. They may be less likely to negotiate fairly with these attorneys.
As there is limited time to take legal action, it is important to contact a lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your situation. Your lawyer needs time to investigate and determine whether you may be eligible to seek compensation.
Need Legal Help? Call Roden Law Today to Find Out How We May be Able to Assist You
Our attorneys understand injury victims often have many questions about the legal process, including how much their claim may be worth and how much time there is to pursue compensation.
That is why we offer a free, no-obligation legal consultation to discuss your situation. That means there is no risk to you in contacting our firm. We are not paid for representing you unless we recover compensation on your behalf.
Learn more by contacting our firm as soon as possible.