I know that this sounds shocking and that it goes against what people think personal injury attorneys should be doing, but it’s absolutely true. Most personal injury attorneys out there simply do not go to court. Some because they don’t want to go through the trouble and most because they don’t know how to even start the process.
Filing a proper lawsuit in a case is not simple and it requires a skilled attorney to properly identify all the claims the plaintiff (you!) can make against the party that caused the plaintiff’s injuries. From there, careful attention is required for important deadlines, discovery procedures, motions practice, etc. to ensure the plaintiff’s claims are secured going forward into the trial stage.
Times have changed…
Over the years, the practice of law in the personal injury space has changed and more and more cases are settling instead of going to trial. In fact, according to the US Department of Justice, Department of Statistics, 98.2% of all personal injury cases settle before a lawsuit is even filed! Of the 1.8% of cases that are filed, 98% settle prior to trial, leaving 0.036% of all personal injury cases that actually make it to the trial stage.
Here’s the thing. Insurance companies are not dumb. They pay attention to these statistics and they have realized that they can get away with paying less and less for claims because most personal injury attorneys are not willing to go the distance (i.e. go to trial) to recover compensation for their clients. There is no threat, so why would they pay more?
Insurance companies track everything!
Over the years, insurance companies began tracking law firms and their tendency to file a lawsuit on their cases through their tax ID numbers. Using that information, insurance companies would intentionally offer significantly less money to firms that did not file lawsuits on their cases, thereby resulting in less money for their clients. This is incredibly problematic for personal injury victims because, through no fault of their own, they are getting paid significantly less because many firms do not go to court. It’s a game of risk assessment for insurance companies. The less of a risk you pose, the less you get paid.
Here’s how you, as the victim, circumvent this issue. When you go to hire your attorney, make sure you ask them if they have gone to court before and if they are willing to take your case to trial. Make sure they do not refer cases out for litigation. If they do refer their cases out, you can almost guarantee a low settlement offer before the referral.
Any questions? Feel free to contact us to discuss any questions or concerns. Here at Slam Dunk Attorney, we have no problem filing a lawsuit on your case and taking your case to trial if necessary. Contact us for a free strategy session today!