Bodily injury lawyers dedicate their lives to representing victims of motor vehicle collisions, slip-and-fall accidents, dog bites, and other incidents caused by the negligence of others. The injured party will seek the attorney’s assistance to reach a settlement or proceed to trial.
In a lawsuit, there is a common misconception that the injured party is suing the insurance company. When you file a bodily injury lawsuit, you are suing the other individual or entity responsible for the damages. In turn, the insurance company provides its client, the defendant, with an attorney to legally defend the case. Typically, the insurance company pays the settlement or judgment reached in the case. This is just one of the reasons why bodily injury lawyers file lawsuits.
Before a lawsuit is filed, the responsible party’s insurance company will often attempt to resolve the case by working with the injured party’s attorney. A settlement can help both parties achieve a fast and fair resolution rather than enter the laborious process of a lawsuit.
While pursuing settlements, bodily injury lawyers gather all of the information to prove their client’s damages, communicating with the defendant’s insurance company directly. An attorney will compile medical records and bills, loss of earnings documentation, and any other supporting documents showing that his or her client’s life has been disrupted. This gives the responsible party’s insurance company the information needed to evaluate a settlement demand. If the insurer ignores a demand to settle, a lawsuit may be necessary to get that company’s attention and move the case forward.
After an attorney makes a demand, the insurance company will usually respond with a settlement offer. If the offer is appropriate for the damages suffered, the recommendation will likely be to accept the offer and settle the case. However, an insurance company often provides an amount that is lower than the case is worth, in which case the attorney should recommend against the offer and proceed with a lawsuit.
The coronavirus pandemic has made it extremely difficult for courtrooms to operate and continues to cause hindrances in legal proceedings. In the L.A. area especially, there is a large and growing backlog of cases awaiting trial. If you are going to file a lawsuit, your attorney will want to do so as soon as possible so that your case can be heard by a judge and jury within a reasonable timeframe.
You might be surprised to learn that many bodily injury attorneys do not want to file lawsuits. It takes time, energy, and input that some are simply looking to avoid or pass off. In many cases, a settlement may be the simplest path—but the best settlements typically require a lawsuit before they are reached. Belgum, Fry & Van Allen is a community-focused, Southern California law firm you can trust to see your case as far as it needs to go—including litigation and trial. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.