What to Expect in Your Auto Accident Injury Case
3 Stages of an Auto Accident Injury Case
So you’ve been involved in a car accident caused by somebody else. Now what? Recently, our Delray Beach personal injury lawyers at Aronberg, Aronberg & Green wrote a blog on how to choose the right firm to represent you in your auto accident case. But, retaining a law firm is not the end of the story. In many ways, it is just the beginning. In this blog, our lawyers are going to walk through the stages of a typical personal injury car accident case..
Stage 1: Fact-Finding
After a client has retained our injury law firm, our team gets to work collecting all of the relevant facts and evidence that we will need to win your case. Some important facts and evidence include:
- photographs of the accident scene (including any damage to vehicles or injuries to people);
- statements of any witnesses to the accident;
- insurance information (including carrier names and policy limits) for all parties;
- medical records and bills reflecting treatment due to injuries from the accident;
- receipts reflecting out-of-pocket expenses incurred due to the accident;
- a copy of the police report (if one was filed); and
- security camera footage of the incident (if any exists).
A personal injury case is a continuous process. Our first collection of evidence and facts does not mark the end of our need for them. As you continue to see your doctor and incur bills due to your accident, we will continue to obtain up-to-date records to further build your case.
Stage 2: Pre-Litigation Attempts to Resolve Dispute
Once our Delray Beach personal injury lawyers have gathered all the evidence in your case, we will calculate your damages and begin negotiating with the insurance companies. The amount of your award will be dependent upon many factors which may include the amount of insurance coverage available to you, seriousness of the crash, amount of your medical bills, amount of your lost wages, duration of your medical treatment, complexity and invasiveness of your medical treatment, whether your injuries are permanent in nature and your need for future medical care.
Because trial can be a tremendously stressful and costly process, our attorneys try to settle your case for you before having to file a complaint with the court. If we successfully demonstrate to the insurance company that it is in their best interest to avoid litigation, and if they offer a favorable settlement amount, we will recommend settling your case. However, if we do not believe you are being offered a favorable settlement amount, we are prepared to go to court on your behalf. Because this is your case, you always have the final say on whether or not we settle the case or go to trial.
Stage 3: Filing a Lawsuit (if necessary)
If settlement negotiations fail, and with your direction, we will file suit on your behalf. Just because we have filed suit by no means indicates that we will actually go to trial. Very few cases make it from the filing stage to the trial stage. The vast majority settle before trial.
Prior to trial, we will conduct a process known as discovery. During discovery, both our firm and the insurance companies will attempt to learn as much as possible about the car crash and how it affected your life. We will request important documents from each other and conduct sworn statements. It is during the process of discovery that both parties have a better sense of “where they are” in terms of how a jury would rule on their case.
After discovery is complete, the parties are required to go to mediation. Mediation is a confidential and formal negotiation where both parties to the lawsuit are encouraged to settle the case. Our attorneys are well prepared for mediation. We will give the insurance company a preview of what we intend to show the jury at trial. Insurance companies typically try to avoid trial at this point and will offer you a favorable settlement. However, mediation is non-binding. You are free to reject the insurance company’s final offer and go to trial.
Every personal injury case is different. It contains different plaintiffs, facts, injuries, defendants, insurance representatives, etc. Therefore, the roadmap provided in this blog post is based on generalities. You should not necessarily expect that your case will follow this exact path.
If you or a loved one have been involved in an auto accident caused by the negligence or wrongdoing of another, please contact our experienced Delray Beach personal injury attorneys at Aronberg, Aronberg & Green by calling 561-266-9191 or by e-mailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please reach out to us to set up a free consultation. We look forward to assisting you.