A settlement is a way to resolve a case without going to litigation or trial. Instead, mutually agreeable outcomes result from a back-and-forth discussion between the injured and the at-fault party.
Many factors must be examined to analyze the offer or offers made during settlement negotiation, including insurance coverages and policy limits, medical bills, future medical costs, pain and suffering, and lost wages. A knowledgeable lawyer could work with an individual to negotiate fair agreement when settling a car accident case in Colorado Springs.
An injured person should bring both information and questions with them to an initial consultation with a car accident lawyer. This information should include facts about the accident, insurance information, documentation regarding any medical treatments they received at the scene of the accident, witness statements, photos, and the police report if it is available.
The questions that a claimant should ask are specific to the situation and should generally be related to the process of the case. “Process” in this context can include both the settlement process and litigation, as well as what the attorney’s fees are going to be, and the roles of all parties involved in the injured party’s car accident case.
In Colorado Springs, it is always the plaintiff’s decision whether they want to try to settle their car accident case or take it to a jury trial. A lawyer could offer guidance and advice, but the final call of settlement versus trial is always the plaintiff’s decision to make.
Often, a person’s reasons for settling rather than go to trial are personal—for example, they may simply need funds sooner rather than later. It also could be an emotional decision, based on the feeling that they want the case process to be done and do not want to go forward with a long, drawn-out trial.
However, one of the most common reasons to refuse a settlement offer from the at-fault driver’s insurance company is because it agrees to a low or unfair amount of compensation. Unfortunately, insurance companies almost always lowball plaintiffs at the beginning of cases, especially if they do not have legal representation.
The settlement process for a Colorado Springs car wreck case begins with the injured party presenting a demand package to the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier. The demand package will have the client’s medical records and bills and make a “demand for settlement.” That demand should be a quantitative dollar figure that accounts for all economic and noneconomic losses.
This begins the negotiation process. During negotiations, the parties go back and forth until they reach an agreeable settlement amount. A settlement is not always reached, but the goal of negotiation is to try to reach a fair amount and avoid a jury trial.
A seasoned lawyer could help someone seeking to settle a car accident case in Colorado Springs by focusing on the facts of the case and not on emotions. Injured parties are generally going to be emotional, but an attorney can remove themselves from the situation and focus on the facts of the case and the ultimate end goal of recovering compensation.
Additionally, many experienced attorneys have built relationships with insurance adjusters and opposing counsel, which can help immensely when trying to come to a settlement. To learn how seasoned legal counsel could help with your case, call today.