After an accident, you’ve probably asked and been asked many questions. One of the biggest questions on your mind probably has to do with whether you’ll have to go to court for your car accident. Unfortunately, there’s no single right answer.
Getting the settlement you need to handle your car accident expenses is likely your top priority after an accident. In some cases, getting your case settled is as simple as filing a claim with the insurance company. But other cases may require more action.
If you’re unsure about your case or you believe your settlement should be larger, give us a call. Our firm can help you decide your next move as you seek compensation.
After you’ve filed your claim with the insurance company, you may be disappointed with your settlement offer. Insurance companies are businesses, after all, and the initial offer may simply not cover what you need.
For instance, if your accident was severe, you may have lifelong issues tied to the crash. Unfortunately, even if the insurance companies cover all of your medical expenses, they likely won’t have compensated you for the pain and suffering you’ve endured because of the recklessness of another driver.
Fortunately, you have the option to refuse your settlement and pursue full compensation in court. While you’ll need to move quickly, as the statute of limitations is only two years, handling your case in court can be more lucrative than simply accepting the insurance company’s first offer.
When considering taking your case to court, be sure you’re prepared to fight for your claim. You can win more compensation in court, but the defendant will likely use your part in the crash against you. Because California recognizes “comparative negligence,” if you are found to have contributed to your collision, your claim could be devalued proportionally.
For example, if you were driving drowsy, you might not have had the reaction time to get out of the way, and you would be found to hold a percentage of fault. This percentage will be taken out of your compensation award. Fortunately, an experienced car accident lawyer can fight for you during settlement negotiations or a trial—if your case ultimately goes to court.
Fighting for your compensation in court can be lucrative when you need more than the insurance companies are willing to give, but without the right firm on your side, you could easily lose your case.
When you’re seeking compensation for your losses after a car accident, it’s important to consider all your options. While you may not be sure whether you have to go to court for a car accident, you should discuss the option with your lawyer.