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Settling A Personal Injury Case

Some personal injury claims can be time consuming and stressful to pursue. Sometimes it can be better for a plaintiff to consider settling a case, either before or while in the midst of a lawsuit.  Depending on the nature of the case, it can sometimes take years before a resolution can be reached in a case.  However, this does not mean that the plaintiff loses out on his or her rightful compensation.  A settlement allows an injured person to receive compensation and resolution faster.

A personal injury settlement occurs when the suing party (the plaintiff) agrees to drop a lawsuit or refrain from filing one IF the party that caused their injuries (the defendant) agrees to pay a certain amount of money.  The defendant may also request that the plaintiff keep the settlement and other details of the case confidential as part of the settlement.   This can happen if there is a high profile defendant who does not want the publicity of a lawsuit.

The money the defendant pays is usually calculated based on the nature of the plaintiff’s injuries, medical costs, and other direct and indirect cost considerations.  Settlement amounts are usually negotiated. If both parties want to avoid costs, they can come to an agreement that works for both sides.  Settlements are usually reached before a judge or jury renders a verdict and are usually for less than the plaintiff originally asked.

Settlements can also happen after a case has been decided, and a verdict reached.  These kinds of settlements happen when the losing party decides to appeal the case.  In these cases, the settlement is usually for less that the verdict amount.  If the plaintiff was awarded punitive damages, the defendant may want to reduce these damages as much as possible through settlement.  Once again, negotiation is key, and the plaintiff does not have to lose out after having won at trial.  However, the appellate process can be long and expensive, and even a winning party may choose to settle for less even when he or she has a winning case.

The decision to settle a case, as opposed to filing a lawsuit, going through a trial, and waiting for a verdict, is up to the plaintiff.  While the plaintiff’s attorney can provide advice and guidance as to the best course of action based on the facts of the case, the plaintiff still has to make the final decision.  The attorney for either side is required to inform his or her client of any settlement offers received from the other side.  It is not always advisable for an injured person to attempt negotiating a settlement without an attorney.

Let Us Help You

If you were injured through the negligence or intentional acts of another and would like to find out how to proceed with a personal injury claim, contact Award-Winning Columbus, Ohio personal injury attorney Ed Schottenstein of Schottenstein Law Offices for a consultation at (614) 467-8474.  There is no charge for a consultation, and we’ll even arrange free valet parking for you.  Contact us TODAY!