How Often Do Personal Injury Cases Go To Trial?
Personal injury cases, like other forms of civil suits, rarely goes to trial. Personal injury claims are a claim against and entity stating that that entity’s negligence caused you to suffer an injury. The plaintiff will file a claim against the defendant, for the money they feel they are owed due to medical expenses, lost time at work, pain and suffering, and any other relevant damages the defendant may have incurred.
In the United States, only four to five percent of personal injury cases actually reach a trial. The overwhelming majority (95%-96%) of cases are settled pretrial. According to thelawdictionary.org, 90% of the cases that actually go to trial result in a loss. Personal injury cases that reach the trial phase often do better in front of a trial judge, rather than a jury. Trial judges tend to pay off at a higher rate and for a larger sum of money.
Why do Most Cases Settle?
- Settlement allows a defendant to control risk and avoid legal costs
If the defendant knows that they are at fault, they will often try to settle outside of court. By settling out of court, the defendant will avoid suffering a bigger loss due to the emotional appeal of the jury. Another reason the defendant will attempt to settle outside of court is that they can control the offer of the settlement.
- Settlement can allow defendant to keep the case out of the public eye
This is generally applicable to high profile suits. For example, if a major corporation sells a defective product that injures a few people, they will attempt to come to an agreement outside of court before it hits the press cycle.These settlements can include a confidentiality agreement.
- Settlement allows plaintiff to avoid protracted trial
If the plaintiff needs money because he/she is unable to work and cannot afford the medical expenses, it is more than likely the two parties will reach a pretrial agreement.
- Settlements are a guaranteed victory
Settlements are a guaranteed victory. When a plaintiff goes to trial for a personal injury suit, there is a chance they can lose and receive nothing for their injuries. Settling before a trial takes place ensures that the plaintiff will receive something.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
If you have been injured due to another person’s negligent or reckless behavior, you may be entitled to compensation. Compensation can include lost wages, medical expenses, and pain and suffering. While personal injury does not always result in a trial, there is a small chance your case does. In the case of a trial, it is important to make sure that you have an experienced personal injury litigation attorney on your side.