Car Accident

If you are injured in a car accident, one of your first questions will be whether your case will go to trial. While you should always expect and prepare for your car accident case going to trial, the reality is that most settle out of court. However, you won’t know this when filing a claim. As such, you should always work with a Charleston car accident lawyer following a motor vehicle crash.

Do I Need to Hire a Charleston Car Accident Lawyer?

If you’re injured in a car accident and suffered physical damage, hiring a Charleston car accident lawyer is in your best interest. Here are a few of the top ways your lawyer can help you navigate your motor vehicle accident claim:

Can Prepare You for Trial - One of the most significant benefits of hiring a Charleston car accident lawyer is if your case goes to trial. Though many will settle outside of court, some will go to a jury. If and when your case does, you need a lawyer to come prepared. At trial, your lawyer can help establish fault, call expert witnesses, and argue on your behalf so you receive the compensation you deserve.

They Know the Law - If you’re involved in a legal matter, you will want to hire an attorney who knows the law, especially regarding car accidents. For example, your lawyer will know SC § 15-38-15 and your options under this state statute. Your lawyer will make recommendations to you based on their expert knowledge.

They Can Negotiate on Your Behalf - Your attorney knows how to estimate the cost of all of your losses, including hard evidence items like medical bills and more abstract things like the emotional cost to you. This means they can come up with an estimate and use that to fight for you when negotiating with your insurance company for a settlement.

Why Do Most Car Accident Cases Settle Out of Court?

Taking a car accident claim to trial is expensive…and usually takes a lot of time. More often than not, this is not something that insurance companies want to partake in, so they will try to settle out of court.

In fact, the American Bar Association found that the number of cases that occur before a jury has declined over the past 50 years, highlighting the fact that, most of all, personal injury claims will never make it to trial.

Here are the top three reasons car accident cases settle out of court:

Time Constraints

Car accident victims looking to recoup funds for their damages only have three years to do so. This timeframe is known as the statute of limitations, and once it closes, your ability to collect compensation from the defendant ends.

On the surface, three years sounds like a long time. However, this timeframe can go by quickly when you factor in severe injuries and lengthy recovery times. Add to this all the pre-trial procedures, such as collecting evidence, filling out paperwork, and filing motions, and there may not be enough time to go to trial.

If you’re severely injured and need compensation to cover your lost wages, you may not have the time to wait to go to trial. As such, having a personal injury lawyer in your corner to advocate for settlement could be beneficial.

Greater Control of the Outcome

When you go to trial, you’re putting the case's outcome in the jury's hands. While hiring an experienced lawyer can elevate your chances of getting the outcome you want, the reality is that no one can predict which way the jury will sway or what they will determine.

Furthermore, when a case goes to trial, it allows the defendant to try and appeal the outcome, which could further delay the process and your ability to collect compensation. For these reasons, some plaintiffs may prefer a settlement outside of court.

Wants to End the Legal Saga Quickly

As mentioned above, going to court for a car accident case can be highly time-consuming. In cases where the plaintiff, their lawyers, or judge feel that the case would be better suited for settlement, those involved will work to make that happen.

Remember, if you prefer to settle to avoid a lengthy trial process, that’s your right. You just have to communicate that to your car accident lawyer.