If you have suffered an injury due to the fault of another person, it is understandable to wonder about your chances of winning a personal injury lawsuit. To evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of your case, you should consider talking to an injury attorney.
Most personal injury attorneys offer free initial consultations. During your consultation, you could learn more about your odds of prevailing in a lawsuit against the at-fault party. Additionally, you could get a picture of what your case might be worth.
Most Cases are Resolved Through Insurance Settlements
Before you can understand your odds of “winning” a lawsuit, it is important to understand how most personal injury claims are resolved.
The vast majority of injury claims conclude not through contentious trials but as a result of negotiated settlement agreements, per the American Bar Association (ABA). That means most people will never have to secure a verdict in their favor in court. In fact, many claims never require lawsuits at all.
No one can predict the outcome of your personal injury case with perfect accuracy. However, an attorney could review the facts of your case and advise you on what to expect.
Why Cases Go to Trial
Despite most personal injury cases ultimately concluding through negotiated settlements, each year, many of these claims are resolved at trial. There are a number of reasons why a claim might bring about a settlement.
The most common reason for an injury case going to trial is a dispute over liability. Most of the time, defendants in these cases acknowledge that they are at least partially to blame for the injury. This usually results in negotiations that are focused more on the amount of the settlement award as opposed to whether a settlement is necessary at all.
In some situations, a defendant might want to settle but does not have the resources to do so. This is most common among claims that are not covered by any type of liability insurance. Often, these defendants feel as though they have little option but to take the case to trial and hope for the best.
Working without a Personal Injury Attorney
The lack of a personal injury attorney can also reduce the chances of securing a fair settlement offer. While there is no requirement that you proceed with legal counsel by your side, the failure to do so could diminish the offer you receive or even result in the insurance company rejecting your claim entirely.
Factors that Impact the Outcome of an Injury Trial
Whether or not you win at trial depends on your ability to establish negligence. You are only entitled to compensation if you can show the defendant was negligent when they caused your injury. In total, there are four elements required to establish negligence, and you must demonstrate each of them to prevail at trial.
These elements include:
- Duty of Care. You must first show that you were owed a duty of care by the defendant. If you were not owed a duty, the defendant is not liable for your injuries. Examples include the duty a driver owes other motorists to operate their vehicle safely. Property owners also owe a duty of care to certain visitors to their property.
- Breach. Usually, the most contentious part of any personal injury case is proving that the defendant breached a duty of care they owed to the plaintiff. Breach usually involves a careless, reckless, or intentional act that results in an injury. Examples include drivers running a stop sign or doctors making a surgical error.
- Causation. There must also be a direct link between a defendant’s negligence and any injuries that occurred. After all, a defendant is not liable for injuries that did not stem from their negligence.
- Damages. In order to recover monetary compensation for your injury, you must also establish that you suffered damages. These damages come in different forms. Some examples include lost wages, pain and suffering, medical bills, or diminished future earning power.
The failure to meet even one of these elements could be detrimental to your personal injury claim. The court will determine if these elements have been met as well as the appropriate amount of damages – if any – to award.
Discuss Your Injury Claim with an Attorney
It is crucial that you give yourself the best chance of prevailing in your personal injury case. For many people, this involves hiring legal counsel that understands the challenges you are facing.
The Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine are proud to serve as advocates for the injured. If you have been hurt through no fault of your own, our team is ready to guide you on obtaining the compensation you deserve.
Call today for your free consultation. To promote your chances of winning a personal injury lawsuit, you must act within Florida Statutes §95.11(3)(a), so call today.