Will My Palm Beach Car Accident Case Go To Trial?

Most Palm Beach car accident injury claims do not go to trial. Palm Beach car accident lawyer

Of course, every case is different. If your Palm Beach car accident lawyer has taken the step of filing a personal injury lawsuit on your behalf, there’s always a chance it will wind up before a jury. But even then, it’s unlikely.

Most Florida car accident cases are actually resolved without the need for litigation (filing a lawsuit) at all. Hiring a South Florida personal injury lawyer doesn’t make the prospect of a lawsuit or trial any more likely. Actually, we may be able to minimize the chance of a courtroom confrontation because we’re adept at negotiating effectively with insurance companies to fight for fair outcomes for our clients. Often the sooner we are brought onto a car accident case, the better the odds we can resolve it without going to court.

Still, we approach every case as if that’s a possibility. From the very outset, we’re meticulous in our investigation, evidence-gathering, researching, interviewing eyewitnesses and consulting with expert witnesses. We’re never bluffing to insurers about our preparedness to escalate to the next level if necessary. But trial is not a common – or even preferable – outcome for most parties involved, usually. If we can settle car accident claims fairly without filing a lawsuit – and especially without going to trial – that’s typically our aim.

Why Palm Beach Car Accident Cases So Rarely Make it to Trial

Some of the reasons why your Palm Beach car accident case is unlikely to go before a judge and jury:

  • Court trials are costly. Lawsuits are expensive, but trials can be very expensive – and time-consuming. Courts are often backlogged. The longer the case goes on, the more both sides amass in legal bills (although plaintiffs in Florida injury cases do not pay attorney’s fees upfront – or at all unless they win).  It’s often much faster and less costly for all involved to reach a mutually-agreeable settlement out-of-court.
  • Trials are risky. Both sides are conceding a bit of their own power in the situation by handing it all over to the judge. There are no guarantees. And if either side has turned down a reasonable settlement offer from the other and the trial outcome isn’t substantially in their favor, they could be compelled to pay the other side’s attorney’s fees – even if they actually won the case. (See F.S. 768.79)
  • Your case isn’t worth much. To be clear: This is not a critique on how greatly you’ve been impacted. We’ve seen car accidents result in severe injuries – but with little value in the legal sense because there was no applicable insurance coverage, comparative fault that was too significant, or too many other parties filing claims from the same small pot. In general, you cannot even step outside the state’s no-fault system for car accident claims unless your injuries meet or exceed the serious injury threshold, as outlined in F.S. 627.737.
  • There’s not much in dispute. Trials are a last resort. You take it to court when neither side can reach an agreement on a critical issue of the case. Disputed issues common in Palm Beach car accident cases include fault (who was actually responsible for the crash), comparative fault (how much of the blame the plaintiff takes for their own injuries), causation (where plaintiff’s injuries really caused by the crash or some other factor?), damages (are your injuries/losses as serious as you say they are?), and applicable insurance (do the policies in question cover the losses at issue – and if so, to what extent). It’s rare that parties involved can’t agree on any of this. And if you do go to trial, it’s not uncommon for a single issue to be in dispute. But if the disputes are relatively minor, there’s little incentive to take the matter to court – unless it’s a serious injury, high-dollar case.

If you’re injured in a Palm Beach car accident and aren’t sure whether you have a case or if you need a lawyer, we can offer insight. We provide an honest assessment. Injury lawyers are not paid unless or until they win these types of claims, so there is no incentive to hype up a potential client about a claim that’s likely to go nowhere. We’ll examine the basic facts and give you our professional opinion on the viability and value of it, and our initial thoughts on how best to proceed.

Contact the South Florida personal injury attorneys at Halberg & Fogg PLLC by calling toll-free at 1-877-425-2374. Serving West Palm Beach, Miami, Tampa, Orlando and Fort Myers/ Naples. There is no fee unless you win.

Additional Resources:

Crash and Citation Reports & Statistics, FLHSMV

More Blog Entries:

Are Florida Personal Injury Lawsuits Subject to Damage Caps?   March 20, 2024, Palm Beach Car Accident Lawyer Blog

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