The movies and television make it seem as if people get million-dollar jury verdicts every day. This rarely happens in the real world. Most personal injury victims are lucky to get just enough to cover their medical bills.
Most personal injury cases don’t actually go to trial. In fact, more than 95% of all personal injury cases settle out of court. Very rarely will a jury spend hours deliberating over a personal injury case. It just doesn’t happen.
In fact, most personal injury cases don’t involve a jury at all. A judge decides the case and awards the plaintiff am amount they deem fair. This amount is based on the damages your Atlanta personal injury lawyer demands in your initial lawsuit.
So, if most cases don’t go to trial, how do they settle? What steps does your lawyer need to take to get you compensation for your injuries?
Your personal injury lawyer in Atlanta, Georgia will do a lot of negotiating with the defendant’s attorney. A lot of this is done through email and telephone calls. Very few settlements actually take place on the courthouse steps.
Georgia Has Mediation
One of the things the courts in Georgia do to move cases along is have the parties attend mediation. The court hates to see cases go to trial. They clog up the court docket and waste a lot of the judge’s time.
In order to avoid trial, your lawyer will go to mediation with you. During this process, the attorneys for both sides will sit in a conference room with their clients. They’ll be accompanied by a third-party mediator.
Mediation gives everyone a chance to sit down and try to come to a settlement agreement. Everyone can speak freely because everything said during mediation is confidential. It can’t be used against you in court.
The mediation session is overseen by an impartial mediator. This is usually a retired lawyer or legal professional. They have probably mediated dozens or hundreds of cases. They’ve seen many cases just like yours.
Your Atlanta personal injury attorney will encourage you to settle your case. They don’t want to go to trial any more than the other guy. Trials are expensive and time consuming. You also risk losing if you go to trial.
The Court Can’t Force You to Settle
Nobody, not even the judge, can force you to settle. Even if your Atlanta personal injury lawyer thinks you should settle, they can’t force you to do it. They may tell you your chances aren’t good if you go to court. But they cannot prevent you from having your day in court.
The mediator knows what the judge will do at trial. This is how they come to their decision. The recommendation they make is based on what they think the judge will do if you go to court. That’s why it’s a good idea to take their recommendations under advisement.
Your Atlanta personal injury lawyer probably agrees with the mediator. They just can’t say that during mediation. Very few cases are so unique that your lawyer doesn’t have a good idea of how they’ll turn out at trial. However, they need to play their cards close to their chest in order to get you the best settlement possible.
Why Would You Want to Settle Your Case?
Settling your case is sometimes a good thing. It means you’ll be getting guaranteed money. You’ll also get your money a lot faster if you settle. Even if you win at trial, it could be months or years before you ever see a dime.
Trials also involve the risk of losing. You could go to trial and walk away with nothing. This doesn’t help anybody – including your lawyer. It may be better to negotiate a fair settlement with the defendant than risk losing in court.
You have no idea what the judge will decide. They could dismiss your case entirely. Or, they may decide in your favor. Without knowing ahead of time, it may be too risky to roll the dice.
Contact an Experienced Atlanta Personal Injury Attorney
If you’ve been hurt in any type of accident, you’re going to need an experienced Atlanta personal injury lawyer at Ted A Greve & Associates. Your attorney will review your case and let you know what it may be worth. They’ll also answer any questions you may have.
Call today and schedule your initial consultation. It’s absolutely free and you pay nothing until you settle your case.