Have you been injured in a car accident? If so, then you’ve probably experienced your fair share of physical and emotional pain and suffering. If your injuries were severe, you might also be dealing with long-term ramifications, such as permanent disability. Making matters worse if the fact that your injuries have been, and might continue to be, expensive to treat. You might also be unable to work due to your injuries, leaving you without the resources you need to obtain adequate medical care and rehabilitation while making ends meet.
All of this pressure might drive you to want to accept a settlement offer as quickly as possible. After all, some settlement offers can seem appealing once you see the figures involved. But a settlement might not be your best option, especially the first one that is made. In order to navigate your personal injury lawsuit in a way that maximizes your chances of the best outcome possible, consider these factors:
- Strengths of your case: Did the other driver admit to causing the accident? Is there a criminal case against him or her for drunk driving? Do you have witnesses who saw the driver looking down at a cell phone just before the accident? All of this evidence can strongly support your case, thereby giving you leverage to negotiate a higher settlement.
- Weaknesses of your case: Were you partially at fault for the accident? Are you struggling to demonstrate how the accident was caused? Is there a lack of evidence placing the fault on the other driver? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then you might want to think about how aggressively you want to push during settlement negotiations.
- Likelihood of success: Analyze the facts in light of the law to determine how likely you are to win at trial. If there’s a high likelihood, then you can push more during settlement talks. If it’s less likely, then you need to be prepared to accept more than you want.
- Know what your case is worth: Before starting negotiations, you need to know the full extent of your damages. This includes medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Only once you have this figure can you truly gauge how close a settlement offer is to where you want to be.
These are just a few of the many considerations you need to make before walking into settlement negotiations. Attorneys understand car accident victims’ desire to quickly move on with as little conflict as possible, but such a strategy probably isn’t right for you. Therefore, before taking any action on your case, think about talking it over with your attorney.