Will Filing a Lawsuit Get Me More for My Claim?
Understanding the Pros and Cons
In a great number of personal injury claims, there comes a point when you have to decide if it is worth your time to file a lawsuit. Sometimes, the decision to file a lawsuit is easy – for example, when the insurance company tries to get you to settle for an unreasonably low amount. Other times, however, a great number of factors must be taken into account.
First, it’s important to realize the advantages of filing. When you file a case and set it for trial, the amount of pressure on the insurance company increases. The question for the adjuster assigned to the case changes from “What is the lowest amount of money I can get this person to accept?” to “What would a jury in this county most likely do with this claim?”. Additionally, when a claim is filed, the case typically gets reassigned to another adjuster. That adjuster may have a different opinion of what the case is worth, and usually has a larger maximum amount for which they are authorized to settle the case. Finally, if facts come out during the discovery portion of the litigation that favor you, that would probably add value to the claim.
However, filing has some disadvantages as well. For example, often when you file your claim the contingency fee rate that your lawyer is charging you goes up slightly. This is because the amount of time and effort spent on the claim increases dramatically once the suit is filed. Additionally, the costs of fees, retaining experts, and paying for depositions to be taken all potentially eat into your settlement proceeds. The result is that, at the end of the day, even if you recover more, you could potentially see a net recovery of less.
If you are unsure whether to file a lawsuit, talking to an experienced trial lawyer is key. Attorneys at Zinda Law Group would be happy to meet with you for a free consultation to discuss your options.