Licensed in Missouri and Kansas

Common Reasons for Personal Injury Cases Going to Trial

At Meyerkord, Russell & Hergott, our objective is to maximize our client’s recovery. Sometimes that means we have to go to trial, despite the risks. But ideally, a personal injury case will settle before trial in order to avoid the time, expense, and risk of losing or getting less than the current settlement offer. However, that sometimes doesn’t happen and we have to go to trial.

Here are the most common reasons why a personal injury case would go to trial:

Unreasonable expectations.

Sometimes the injured plaintiff, or the defendants in personal injury cases, have unreasonable expectations. Injured plaintiffs may want too much money; more so than could ever be obtained in a trial. Likewise, defendants in a personal injury case might wrongly think they did nothing wrong and shouldn’t have to pay. Either way, this is often the most common reason a case goes to trial. To avoid this, lawyers should try hard to set realistic expectations with their clients.

Lack of Informed Decision-Making.

The person controlling the amount of money the defendant offers in settlement doesn’t know what the case is worth. Similar to unreasonable expectations, sometimes the person who determines how much money is offered to settle a case does not have all of the information to make an informed decision. Or, they may have incorrect information. This can cause them to think the Plaintiff is asking for too much money. To avoid this, from the start of our cases, we work hard to make sure the defense knows they are going to have to pay big.

Using the verdict in a different case.

If an insurance company refuses to offer the defendant’s policy limits to settle a case when it should, then the insurance company can be sued in bad faith. This requires the Plaintiff get a judgment against the defendant in a trial. This judgment will then be used to sue the insurance company for acting in bad faith.

These are a few of the reasons why case may go to trial. At our law firm, we prepare every case for trial. However, we try to avoid them by getting a fair settlement for our clients. If you have any questions about trials in a personal injury case, please feel free to contact us at any time.

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