You've Got Questions, We've Got Answers
It's almost always in the best interest of the insurance company to settle out of court. They arrive at the value of an insurance settlement in several ways, including by:
The insurance adjuster will enter whatever information they are able to gather into their actuarial claims software, which generates a settlement offer. The first settlement offer will likely be much less than the predicted total value of your case.
In a typical personal injury case, both parties to the accident would prefer to avoid the uncertainty of a trial. The injured party may be financially motivated to finalize a settlement quickly, while the party accused of negligence is often particularly motivated to avoid negative publicity or the admission of liability.
Since most personal injury cases are settled without going to trial, professionals who represent parties to accident cases participate in settlements regularly. Insurance companies and plaintiff attorneys have experience and tools to help them put a value on an injury case, so minimal negotiation may suffice to arrive at an amount that is mutually agreeable.
The Benefits of Settling Your Injury Case Out of Court:
Negotiations in a personal injury case are typically ongoing before, during and sometimes after a trial until a settlement is reached.
Deposition allows each side to collect information from individuals to whom the other side may have previously had exclusive access or who were not initially cooperative.
Thus, the deposition phase can function as a litmus test by providing lawyers for both sides an opportunity to see what evidence, testimony and resources are available to present or defend against a case to a judge or jury, and can facilitate changes to each side's negotiating position, including new settlement offers and more urgency to avoid trial.
Factors That Can Help You Determine the Expected Value of Your Personal Injury Settlement include:
Money awarded in personal injury settlements in California is technically legally exempt from garnishment, but if you accidentally mismanage that money, that exempt status could be put in jeopardy.
What You Can Do to Protect Your Injury Settlement from Being Garnished:
A personal injury settlement calculator will probably not provide you with a very accurate idea of the value of your case.
A settlement calculation tool used with the appropriate assumptions behind the data entered can provide a very broad and general idea of what your settlement may be worth, but it takes an expert such as an experienced personal injury attorney to make the best use of these tools and come up with a more meaningful estimate of the potential value of your case.
Get a copy of our answers to 64 of the most common questions people have about:
Contact Us and We'll get back to You