What Percentage of Auto Accidents Go to Trial?

Cindy had been stopped on the freeway during rush hour when a pickup truck slammed into the back of her car. She was hurt and her car was totaled, but the amount the insurance company offered wouldn’t even cover her medical bills. Her husband, Jim, told her to call a personal injury lawyer.

“No,” said Cindy, her fingers getting white as she squeezed the edge of the table. Visions of herself sitting in the courtroom, a hostile lawyer barking questions at her, the jury staring, everyone looking at her, filled her mind.

“I’m sorry, I just can’t do that.”

Deep down, Cindy knew the insurance company was cheating her. Her car had been totaled, she’d suffered injuries, and she’d missed time from work. But there was just no way she could go through the process of a jury trial.

Cindy is not unusual in being terrified of public speaking, as it’s the most commonly reported fear in surveys. The feeling of getting up in front of others and being judged by a group causes anxiety in the vast majority of us. We might imagine the dramatic courtroom scenes we’ve watched in movies, with lawyers yelling during cross-examination and juries giving dirty looks to whoever’s being questioned. But this shouldn’t be a factor in hiring a lawyer for an accident.

Only one in twenty cases go to trial.
95% of cases are settled before the trial. In fact, only one in ten cases even goes to formal litigation, which is the war of papers that lawyers use to fight out the case long before anyone is summoned to court. So you can see that there’s very little chance you’ll ever have to stand up in front of the judge and jury. Your lawyer will work on your case and get you money for your injuries while you go about your normal life.

Lawyers already know what the case is worth.

Just like your fingerprint, your personal injury case is unique, but experienced lawyers can look at the evidence, compare past cases, and come up with a dollar amount. Insurance adjusters and personal injury lawyers, with the help of the medical records, can usually agree on a certain range, give or take. It’s usually not necessary to go to court to judge the value of your case.

In some states, it’s even less likely you’ll go to trial.

There are a few states, called no-fault states--for example Florida--that only allow a car accident lawsuit in serious cases. In these states, if your accident did not cause a serious enough injury, then you may collect lost wages and medical expenses only to the limits of your insurance policy.

Under no-fault laws, the victim does not have to prove that the crash was somebody else’s fault before getting compensation. His insurance company pays for the medical bills, rehabilitation costs, and lost wages up to a certain amount. In these cases, you will never have to go to trial.

Finally, trial is expensive.

Another reason your lawsuit probably won’t go to trial is simple economics. It’s expensive. You must hire a team of experts to document the evidence. The insurance company will also be spending thousands or tens of thousands of dollars to try to deny you money. Most lawyers charge a higher fee for trials because it is more work. Plus, all jury trials are a gamble. No one knows for sure what a judge or a jury will do.

In the vast majority of cases, both sides agree on a compromise number they can both live with, before ever setting foot in a courtroom.

Therefore, don't let the fear of going to trial prevent you from receiving the justice you deserve. Call the attorneys at Shapiro, Goldman, Babboni, Fernandez, & Walsh for your FREE Consultation with NO Obligation today by calling us at (800) 954-4014.

The attorneys at GetMeJustice are dedicated to helping injured victims in Lakeland, Arcadia, Punta Gorda, and Southwest Florida receive the justice they deserve. We will help you get compensation for your injuries, whether a trial is necessary or not.  As experienced personal injury lawyers, we quickly help our clients recover from their devastating injuries and assist them with rebuilding their lives. Follow us on Google+, or visit us on our Website.