If you’ve been in a car accident or sustained injuries due to someone else’s negligence, you may wonder if you should sue the at-fault party. You may also wonder whether you need to hire a Denver personal injury lawyer to recover your damages. While personal injury cases don’t always go to court, there are situations where it’s the best option. If your personal injury case does go to court, you will better your odds of having a successful case outcome by being prepared.
What Causes a Personal Injury Case to Go to Court?
Car accidents are among the most common types of personal injury cases our Denver personal injury lawyers handle. Car accident cases don’t have to go to court in most cases. However, once you hire a lawyer, they will investigate your case and gather evidence to demonstrate your incurred damages.
If the other party’s insurance company and your attorney agree on a desirable settlement offer, you will settle the case before proceeding to trial. If, however, neither party can reach an agreeable solution, your case may need to go to court.
In the case of a car accident claim, here are a few scenarios when your claim might proceed to court:
- If the insurance company won’t offer or agree to give you a fair settlement
- If, even after your attorney has negotiated with the insurance company, they will not agree to pay out a sufficient amount of money for your damages.
- If neither or none of the parties can agree on who is liable for the car accident
It’s important to remember that insurance companies are businesses whose primary goal is to make a profit. Therefore, they usually want to settle cases by paying out as little as possible. If insurance companies are unwilling to pay you what you deserve or even try to place blame on you, your attorney might suggest proceeding to trial with your case.
What Happens if a Personal Injury Case Goes to Court?
In any personal injury case that goes to court, both parties will have the opportunity to present their case with supporting evidence. This is when a personal injury lawyer will be particularly advantageous. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you prepare your claim for trial by gathering sufficient evidence and carefully and strategically presenting your case.
You Need to Prove Negligence in Your Personal Injury Case
A critical factor in winning your personal injury claim will be proving the other party’s negligence. You will also need to prove negligence to win a settlement from the insurance company before your case ever goes to court. Here are the four key elements you need for a valid negligence claim:
- Duty of Care – duty of care refers to the responsibility that the other party owed you a certain level of “due care.” For example, in a car accident case, the other driver would have had a duty to operate their vehicle with due care regarding other drivers and passengers on the road.
- Breach of Duty – If the driver breached their duty of care by failing to exercise reasonable care that harmed another person. An example would be a reckless driver exceeding the posted speed limit.
- Causation – You must prove that the other party’s breach of duty is what caused your injuries and losses. In doing so, you will be able to establish liability.
- Damages – Damages in legal terms refer to any injuries or losses you’ve suffered from the accident. Damages can be physical and psychological harm, lost wages, or property damage.
An experienced personal injury attorney can help you determine the value of the economic and non-economic damages in your case. Your attorney will consider factors like emotional distress, injury, disfigurement, or loss of enjoyment of activities when determining the value of your case.
You Need to Present Evidence
If your personal injury case goes to court, you must provide evidence that convinces a judge or the jury that the other party’s negligence caused your injuries. This is called the burden of proof, meaning that the plaintiff must prove the defendant’s negligence.
Here are some examples of different types of evidence your attorney may prepare to present in court:
- Interviews with witnesses
- Expert interviews (example: a doctor who treated your injuries after a car accident)
- Medical records
- Other evidence demonstrating your injuries
- Official police report or accident report
Keep in mind that if your case goes to court, the defendant (or at-fault party) and their attorney will also have the opportunity to cross-examine you and your witnesses. They will also present their side of the story and have a right to provide objections to any evidence. Finally, after both sides have presented their case, the decision will go to a jury.
Your case will be heard and tried by a judge or a jury. Personal injury claims are civil cases, so they are more focused on helping the accident victims recover for their losses rather than finding someone guilty.
Once both sides have presented their evidence at trial, the jury or a judge will decide:
- Who was at fault for the accident
- How much money you will be awarded from the insurance company for your damages
If all goes well in court, you will get a substantial settlement for your damages. However, lawsuits are expensive, and most attorneys will not take a case to trial unless they are confident enough to win your case. Whether or not your case needs to go to court, it will benefit you to seek legal counsel from an experienced attorney. Contact a Denver personal injury lawyer today if you are unsure about your case.
Do Not Miss Your Opportunity To Seek Compensation
Do not delay filing a lawsuit if you have sustained injuries due to someone else’s negligence. Every state has a time limit, known as a statute of limitations, for you to take action. In Colorado, the statute of limitations for personal injury claims is two years. So the clock starts ticking from the day the incident occurred.
Protect yourself and your legal rights by hiring proper legal counsel to ensure all paperwork is filed within the appropriate deadline. You won’t want to miss the opportunity to pursue compensation that you are entitled to, and you only have one chance.
Contact a Denver Personal Injury Lawyer Today
Many personal injury cases like car accidents reach a fair settlement before a court hearing. However, if a trial proceeding is the best option for your unique case, our Denver personal injury lawyers will not hesitate to take it on for you.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries due to someone else’s negligence: you have a right to compensation. It would help if you did not have to deal with a legal battle alone while trying to recover and get your life back on track.
Our personal injury attorneys have handled countless cases helping victims navigate the unique challenges of personal injury claims. We take a personalized approach to every case that allows us to provide honest support to our clients. We will fight aggressively on your behalf to get you the compensation you deserve.
Call us today for a free consultation.