If you have been hurt in an accident caused by the negligence of another party, you have probably thought about filing a personal injury lawsuit. A lawsuit often occurs when both parties involved in a car crash don’t agree on a settlement outside of court.
A lawsuit is filed in court and you should be represented by one of the best car accident attorneys Los Angeles to increase your chances of getting the compensation you deserve to receive.
Filing a lawsuit means asking the court to get involved in your injury claim. Keep reading to learn more about how personal injury lawsuits work:
Personal Injury Claim vs Personal Injury Lawsuit
When you have been harmed because of the action of another party, you have a personal injury claim and might be eligible to seek compensation for your losses. Generally, insurance claims are filed first to ask the insurance company of the at-fault party to compensate you for your injuries and damages.
Usually, lawsuits are filed when negotiations with insurance providers fail or when filing deadlines are getting close. Lawsuits carry a possible award from a judge or jury.
Steps Involved When Seeking Compensation for Car-Accident-Related Injuries
When you hire an attorney to help you seek compensation, these are steps they will take:
- Prelitigation. Following a car accident, your injury attorney will gather evidence, notify the insurance companies involved, and build out your legal claim. During this time, they will investigate all parties involved including their assets and possible liability. After getting all the necessary information, the attorney will negotiate with insurance claims adjusters to try to resolve your claim without filing a lawsuit. If insurance companies refuse to pay the amount your attorney demands, you can proceed with a lawsuit.
- Litigation. Filing a lawsuit can be done in a state or federal court, depending on the nature of your claim. The majority of attorneys file a legal complaint electronically. Then, the complaint must be served on the defendants that should respond within a specific time. Litigation begins when the defendants respond to the complaint.
- Mediation and Dispute Resolution. Even if you filed a personal injury lawsuit, the insurance company can continue to negotiate a settlement with you. Your case may go through medication, which is a process to dissolve your disputes. During this process, a trained, neutral expert will help you and the defendant find common ground. But, if mediation fails to resolve your disputes, your injury case will go to trial.
- Trial and Appeals. When your case goes to trial, a jury will be chosen and both parties will be allowed to present their evidence, including witnesses. Then, the jury will deliberate and decide whether or not to award or deny your compensation request. An appeal is available to a party that does not agree with the verdict of the jury.