California Personal Injury Claims: Mediation vs. Litigation

Our attorneys have been assisting the Orange County and Southern California communities for over 40 years.

Request free consultation

California Personal Injury Claims: Mediation vs. Litigation

Request free consultation
Posted By DAM Firm | September 5 2023 | Personal Injury

If you or somebody you love has been injured due to the knowledge actions of another party, it is likely you can file some type of claim to recover compensation for your losses. Often, this is a claim against an insurance carrier, but this could mean filing a personal injury lawsuit in civil court. Here, we want to discuss two possible routes of concluding an injury claim – mediation and litigation.

Mediation vs. Litigation

What is Mediation in a Personal Injury Claim

The mediation process is a common route toward resolving a personal injury claim. Mediation is generally less expensive and easier, and individuals often resolve the claim much faster than they would if they moved forward with a full court case.

Sometimes, a plaintiff and defendant will agree to mediation on their own, but it may often take place as a result of a judge referral.

During a mediation, a neutral third party acts as a mediator. This individual is often a former attorney or judge who has experience handling these types of claims. The mediator will facilitate communication between the two parties in order to resolve the dispute.

A mediator will sit with both parties and listen to the facts of the case. The mediator will not disclose confidences between the two sides, but they do have more information and are able to help guide the parties towards a successful resolution.

In the event a mediation is successful, the case is essentially closed. The negotiated settlement will be presented to the court and hopefully accepted by a judge. 

If a mediation is not successful, the case will move forward toward trial as it would have otherwise done if the mediation had not occurred. The results of the mediation process will not play a role in the court case, and anything said during the mediation will not come up during a trial unless the information is otherwise obtained through depositions or evidence available.

What Does Litigation Mean for an Injury Claim

Litigation is a more formal term for a lawsuit. This is the process of coming to a resolution for legal disputes. In a personal injury claim, the litigation process starts when the case gets filed in civil court. This begins the discovery process, where both sides will exchange information and evidence with one another. There will also be depositions taken of any potential witnesses that will be used at trial.

Throughout the discovery process, negotiations may continue between two parties, particularly if evidence is uncovered that pushes one or the other party towards a settlement or to have the case dropped. If a settlement gets reached before a jury trial becomes necessary, then the case is over. However, if the two parties cannot reach an agreement, the case will move forward towards a jury trial.

Do You Need an Attorney?

We strongly encourage any personal injury victim to reach out to a skilled attorney for assistance with their claim. When you work with a personal injury lawyer in Orange County, you will have an advocate ready to help you recover compensation, whether that route is through mediation or through more formal litigation. Your attorney will have experience handling these types of negotiations and advise you on the best path moving forward.

Request Free Consultation

  • *required fields