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If you or a loved one sustain a slip and fall injury caused by the negligent actions of a property owner or another party, you should be able to recover compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and other losses. However, will your case go all the way to court, or will it settle before reaching the courtroom?
Most injury claims are settled before they go to court. However, that does not mean that the settlement process is easy or quick.
Settlements occur between insurance carriers in most situations. It is important to realize that the insurance carriers are not on the side of the person making the claim. The goal of an insurance carrier and their claims adjusters is to limit how much compensation they pay out because when they pay out larger sums, it ultimately affects their bottom line.
It is not uncommon for insurance carriers to significantly delay a claim or offer very low settlements. When a claim is denied, or if an insurance carrier puts forth an unfair settlement, the plaintiff and their attorney will likely need to negotiate in order to recover a fair amount. Sometimes, a negotiation is quick, particularly if liability is relatively clear. However, these negotiations can go on for quite some time, possibly even months or more than a year, if there is a dispute over who caused the incident.
When a case settles with an insurance carrier or another party, this means that the plaintiff will not have to go to court.
In the event the insurance carrier or at-fault party refuses to offer a fair settlement for a claim, the injury victim and their attorney will likely need to file a civil personal injury lawsuit. This does put the case into the court system but does not necessarily mean that the plaintiff will have to go to court.
The civil lawsuit process can be time-consuming and begins with the discovery phase, where attorneys for both sides will exchange information and evidence with one another. Depositions of any witnesses will likely be taken, particularly as the claim moves closer to trial. Negotiations may continue, and it is not uncommon for a lawsuit to be settled before reaching the trial process. However, if a fair settlement cannot be reached, the case will have to go to trial, which means you will indeed have to go to court.
If you or somebody you care about has been injured in a slip and fall accident caused by the negligent actions of another party in Orange County, we encourage you to reach out to an attorney as soon as possible. When you have a slip and fall injury lawyer by your side, you will have an advocate ready to stand up to other parties involved, handle negotiations, and prepare for a trial if one becomes necessary. We understand that this entire process can be confusing, but an attorney will be by your side every step of the way, even if you do have to go to the courtroom.