Very few personal injury cases go to trial. The vast majority of cases reach a resolution before being presented to a jury. That means that when you are working to obtain fair compensation in your injury case, how you negotiate your settlement is crucial.
Your attorney can do important things to increase the size of your settlement and ensure that your case is resolved on fair terms. This is how a Nevada personal injury attorney solves an injury case.
Your attorney sets your case
Although it is highly unlikely that you will go to trial , your attorney begins the case assuming you will go to trial. That means carefully drafting your filing documents so that they stand up to court scrutiny. You must fully state your demand for action and your reasons for recovery.
There are steps your injury attorney takes at this stage to preserve evidence. They could demand that people keep evidence that may be crucial to the case, such as surveillance video. They may be able to help you discover and document the extent of your injuries with the help of medical professionals. Establishing the evidence in your case is critical to helping the other party understand why it is in their best interest to come to the table with a fair settlement offer.
Serious liquidation talks typically occur after discovery
In cases where fault is obvious and there is an insurance policy to cover the damages, settlement talks can happen quickly after an accident. However, in the vast majority of cases, settlement conversations don’t begin until both parties have time to learn about the case. Even if you are the plaintiff and the victim, you may not know all the details related to the accident. The other side also wants to learn the details of the accident.
Through a process called discovery , both parties have the opportunity to dive into the details and build their case. Discovery can include statements, written questions called interrogations, and physical inspections of the scene. The discovery process can take several months for complicated cases. The purpose of discovery is to reduce trial problems and give each party a fair chance to learn the facts of the case to determine how they want to proceed.
Your attorney carefully assesses your damages
A big part of the discovery process is determining the value of your case. When you reach the end of your case value, you know where to start negotiating with the other side. The defense will likely take the time to assess the claim as well. If both parties can apply a measure of objectivity to the case, they may be able to reduce the amount of disagreement about the case.
For example, if you believe the case is worth $ 100,000 and the other party believes it is worth $ 10,000, it is unlikely that you will be able to resolve the case through settlement. However, if both of you extensively prepare the case through discovery, it could come close to a resolution. You could conclude that your case is worth $ 80,000. If the other party goes through the discovery process and finds the case worth $ 75,000, they are much closer to settling than before.
In most cases, your injury attorney allows the discovery process to begin so the other party can learn about the strengths of your case for future negotiations. Once you complete the discovery process, it is time for your attorney to negotiate a settlement on your behalf.
Writing a demand letter
One way your attorney solves a personal injury case is by sending a demand letter to the defense. A demand letter clearly establishes the basis of your case and your claims for damages. If the defense hasn’t put it all together yet, your attorney can help you clarify the case and what you are seeking in resolution.
The defense can respond by accepting your demands. They can also respond with a counter offer . If they do not respond at all, the case continues to go to trial until further negotiations.
Talking to the other side
Your attorney also works to resolve your case through informal conversations with the other side. Your attorney has training and experience to assist you in these discussions. Attorneys can discuss any point of dispute in the case and negotiate the terms of a settlement.
There are often back and forth negotiations
Your injury attorney is unlikely to settle the case with a phone call. There is often a back and forth in negotiations. The other side may dispute some of your claims. Your attorney can strategically decide when to share information with the other party and when it is best to save the information for later.
Back and forth negotiations with the other side are strategic. Your attorney may not want the other party to know your bottom line. They may not want the other party to know their attorney’s mental impressions of the case. Your injury attorney solves your case by handling these negotiations tactfully and strategically.
Formal mediation procedures
A personal injury attorney can seek a settlement of your case in mediation. Mediation is a formal negotiation procedure. Unlike the informal exchange that attorneys can conduct over the phone or by email, mediation occurs face-to-face. The parties are also assisted by a trained mediator to help reduce problems and facilitate settlement discussions.
An agreement is valid when signed in writing
If the parties reach an agreement, your attorney resolves your case by putting the agreement in writing. A settlement agreement is valid when the agreement is in writing and signed by both parties.
Your attorney carefully reviews the draft agreement to make sure it fairly represents the agreement. If you accept the agreement, the parties send a signed copy of it to the court for approval. Once the judge signs the agreement, your attorney has settled your case.
How a lawyer can help
Having the right attorney on your side is critical to obtaining fair payment for your personal injury claim . With most cases resolved before trial, having an experienced and confident attorney on your side makes all the difference.