Figuring out what to do in the aftermath of a car accident can be an overwhelming process. Those in Colorado who have suffered serious injuries need to focus on recovering their health, including their physical capabilities, and those who lose a loved one to a wreck likely need time to emotionally heal. At the same time, these victims and their families may be facing severe financial hardship. Medical expenses can quickly rack up, and funeral costs and lost wages may make it challenging, if not impossible, to make ends meet.
When the auto accident in question was caused by the negligence of another, then legal action may be justified. But not all personal injury and wrongful death cases wind up being litigated. In fact, a significant number of them end in settlement negotiations. Here, a victim can seek a favorable resolution while avoiding the time and costs associated with taking a case to trial.
Before accepting a settlement offer, a victim should consider a number of factors to determine if the settlement offer is in his or her best interest. To start, one should consider the strength of the case by looking at recent verdicts in similar cases and identifying evidentiary strengths and weaknesses. It’s also helpful to anticipate the defense’s arguments and whether they are backed by compelling evidence. Then, a victim needs to carefully consider how much his or her claim is worth. With an accurate picture, he or she can more easily tell if a settlement offer is too low. The amount of time it would take to litigate a claim, the personal information that may be aired in open court, and one’s patience with the process should also be considered.
The best way to prepare for settlement negotiations is to enter them equipped with strong legal arguments that can be utilized at trial. This will help the other side see what they risk by litigating the matter, and it oftentimes compels them into negotiating in hopes of reaching a resolution. Therefore, car accident victims and their families need to prepare their cases as if they are going to trial, even if they anticipate accepting a settlement.