- August 11 2023
- | Car Accidents
If you have been injured in a car accident, you may be feeling overwhelmed and confused. Mounting medical bills, possibly coupled with an inability to work, may leave you feeling hopeless.
If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident or lost a loved one in a crash, and you’re considering legal action, you may be wondering, “How often do car accident cases go to court?”
While that’s a difficult question to answer with certainty because there are no real figures available, most personal injury cases are settled during negotiations between the plaintiff and the insurance companies. This means that most injury cases, including car crash cases, never actually go to trial.
WHY DO CASES GO TO TRIAL?
Cases can go to trial for a variety of reasons. Usually, cases that go to trial do so because an insurance company refuses to negotiate in good faith when trying to agree on an appropriate amount of compensation. Other reasons a case might go to trial include the following:
The Severity of the Injuries
The severity of the injuries is one of the most important factors that determines whether a car accident case will go to court. If the injuries are relatively minor, the parties may be more likely to be able to reach a settlement without going to court. However, if the injuries are severe, the injured party may be more likely to seek a larger settlement, which may make it more difficult to reach an agreement outside the court room.
In some cases, the severity of the injuries may also make it necessary to go to court in order to obtain the necessary compensation. If the injured party has suffered a permanent disability, they may need to go to court to obtain a settlement that will cover their ongoing medical expenses.
The Amount of Insurance Coverage Available
The amount of insurance coverage available is another factor that can influence whether a car accident case will go to court. If the at-fault driver has limited insurance coverage, the injured party may be more likely to go to court to seek additional compensation.
The Complexity of the Case
The complexity of the case can also play a role in determining whether a car accident case will go to court. If the case is complex, it may be more difficult to reach a settlement, and the parties may be more likely to go to court. This might be the case if there are multiple parties involved or if there are disputed issues of liability. Additionally, if the case involves complex legal issues, such as the interpretation of a contract or the application of a statute, the case may also be more likely to go to court.
The Willingness of the Parties to Negotiate
The willingness of the parties to negotiate is also a key factor in determining whether a car accident case will go to court. If the parties are willing to negotiate in good faith, they may be able to reach a settlement without going to court.
In some cases, the parties may be unable to reach a settlement because they have different views on the value of the case. For example, the injured party may believe that the case is worth a million dollars, while the insurance company may believe that the case is only worth $100,000. In these cases, the parties may be more likely to go to trial to have a judge or jury decide the value of the case.
The factors that influence whether a car accident case will go to trial can vary depending on the specific circumstances of the case. However, the factors discussed above are some of the most common factors that can influence the outcome of a car accident case.
If you have been involved in a car accident, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer to discuss your legal options. An experienced lawyer can help you understand the factors that may influence whether your case will go to court and can help you negotiate a fair settlement or represent you in court if necessary.
Examples of car accidents that have settled in and out of court:
- Case that went to court: A driver was injured in a car accident that was caused by the other driver’s negligence. The injured driver suffered severe injuries, including a spinal cord injury. The insurance company for the at-fault driver offered a settlement that was far below what the injured driver believed was fair. The injured driver refused to settle, and the case went to trial. The jury awarded the injured driver a significant amount.
- Case that settled out of court: A driver was involved in a car accident that resulted in minor property damage. The insurance companies for the two drivers were able to reach a settlement without going to court. The settlement was for a relatively small amount of money, but it was enough to cover the cost of the property damage.
HOW LONG DOES A TRIAL LAST FOR A CAR ACCIDENT?
If you’ve been injured in a car crash or are grieving the loss of a loved one, this is an understandable question. It’s another question that has no real answer. Because each case is different, the length of time that’s required for the trial is different. Some factors that lengthen or shorten this time include:
- The number of defendants
- The number of witnesses
- The strength of your case
- The severity of your injuries
- The strength of the defendant’s case
- Whether or not blame is being contested.
Sometimes a trial can last a few days; other times trials can take a few weeks. Often a year or more might pass before a trial even starts. The skilled car accident lawyers at Leverty & Associates Law Chartered can look at your case and give you a better answer to your question, “How long does a trial last for a car accident?”
THE SETTLEMENT PROCESS
If you’ve been injured or have lost a loved one in a motor vehicle accident, consulting with a Reno motorcycle accident lawyer can be crucial in understanding how the car accident settlement process works. Trials can seem like frightening experiences, so if you’re wondering, “How often do car accident cases go to court?” it can be a relief to know that most cases are handled through the settlement process.
To settle your case for the maximum amount of compensation, our car accident lawyer will:
- Gather evidence about the crash, including photos of the scene and the accident report.
- Obtain medical records, lists of medications, and a treatment plan.
- Locate any available witnesses to get their testimonies.
- Work with experts such as doctors and accident reconstruction specialists.
Once your lawyer has built a strong case for you, they will send a demand letter to the defendant and their insurance company that lays out your claim, describes your injuries, and explains the damages you seek to recover.
When the demand letter has been received, the defendant’s insurance company will do a thorough investigation of their own. After they have investigated, they will decide whether to accept the terms of your demand letter. The next steps in the process hinge on whether the insurance company agrees that you have a viable claim.
The defendant’s insurance company may counter with their own offer, which would begin an opportunity for negotiation and discussion about a fair settlement. If they refuse to come to an agreement, it may be more likely that your case will go to trial. However, an agreement can be reached at any time, even the night before a trial begins or during the trial itself.
STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS FOR CAR ACCIDENTS
If the question “What percentage of car accident cases go to trial?” is something you are weighing while considering legal action, there is another important consideration. Personal injury cases are governed by laws called statutes of limitations. These laws limit the amount of time in which a victim can initiate legal action against the person responsible for their injuries.
Under Nevada law, the statute of limitations to commence legal action for personal injury is two years from the date of the accident. The limit to file a wrongful death lawsuit is two years from the date of death. If you wait to file your claim until after the statute of limitations has expired, your claim is likely to be immediately dismissed. If you have lost a loved one due to the negligence of another, it is important to speak with a Reno wrongful death lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your legal options.
WHY CHOOSE LEVERTY & ASSOCIATES LAW CHARTERED?
If you were injured in a car crash and are considering legal action, and you’re wondering, “How often do car accident cases go to court?” you are not alone.
According to government statistics, there were 6.7 million motor vehicle accidents in 2019. Of those, 1.9 million people were injured and just over 33,000 people lost their lives. These experiences are life-changing and traumatic. Leverty & Associates Law Chartered is here to help you through this difficult time.
Our family firm has been helping accident victims since 1979. You can count on our Reno car accident lawyer to provide you with personal, compassionate service. Knowledge of the insurance industry is a bedrock of our firm. This gives us a unique insight into how best to negotiate to make sure our clients get the maximum compensation they deserve for their injuries.
CALL US TODAY FOR HELP WITH YOUR CAR ACCIDENT CLAIM
With over a decade of combined experience, the attorneys at Leverty & Associates Law Chartered can help guide you through the car accident claim process. Call us at (775) 322-6636 and have the peace of mind that comes from knowing you have experience on your side.