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The pros and cons of settling out of court

Imagine being involved in a car accident. The other driver was texting while driving and crashed into your vehicle. The accident totaled your car and left you with a few broken bones. Now you have growing medical bills, a new car to buy and lost wages from missing work. You know that the other driver's insurance should cover these expenses, but should you take a settlement or go to trial?

In most cases, personal injury claims never see the inside of a courtroom. Usually, the insurance company offers a settlement. This might happen before you even file a lawsuit for damages. Settlements often include back-and-forth negotiations between the insurance company and the injured party's attorney. There are both pros and cons to accepting a settlement. A personal injury attorney in the Cincinnati area can help you determine if a settlement is right for you.

Factors to consider

When deciding whether or not to accept a settlement, there are several things to take into consideration. For example, your attorney will look at the strength of your case. This includes examining similar cases and the verdicts the juries handed down on them. The odds of winning at trial will be a crucial factor. Your attorney will evaluate your evidence and your opponent's evidence to determine who has the stronger case.

Other issues to consider include the amount of the award. Furthermore, your lawyer will compare the settlement offered with what he or she thinks you might receive at trial.

Pros

In general, you can usually negotiate a settlement and receive a payout much quicker than going through the trial process. Also, reaching a settlement is a guarantee of compensation.

If you choose to settle out of court, you save yourself exposure. Court proceedings are often public, which means if you go to trial you risk certain personal information coming under scrutiny.

Cons

When you agree to a settlement, you essentially give up your right to pursue any further legal action. Another issue with accepting a settlement is that you may end up with a much lower award than a jury may have granted.

If you have suffered an injury due to someone else's negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. Deciding whether or not to pursue a settlement or a court case can make a significant difference in the amount of damages you receive. It is typically your best bet to have a lawyer on your side who is both a strong negotiator and a persuasive litigator.

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