As anyone who has dealt with complicated legal issues can attest to, winning in court can be expensive. The unfortunate reality is that many victims of personal injury don’t have the financial means available to pursue justice and win the damages that they deserve.
If you or a loved one has suffered serious injuries and expensive medical bills because of someone else, here are a few key strategies that you can use to pursue a personal injury case even when it seems too expensive.
Evaluate Your Claim
The primary rule of thumb in a pending personal injury case is to know what you may be entitled to under the laws of your local jurisdiction. It’s critical to know all the damages that the law allows so that you have a clear idea of the amount of money on the line.
In some cases, in which the injured party (the plaintiff) doesn’t have the financial resources to battle it out in court—especially up against a well-funded opponent like a large business with an army of lawyers—a settlement might make sense. Many defendants, particularly when they believe themselves to be liable and therefore likely to lose the case, will take the option to settle for less than they might have to pay in a judgment from the court.
However, you should always consider your options carefully before settling. While this can be an easier option, the settlement may not be enough to cover your expenses. Get an expert opinion from an experienced attorney before proceeding with a settlement or risk losing out on a potentially large sum.
Be Prepared for Hard Negotiations
If you’re angling for a settlement (which, again, might make sense under the right conditions), be prepared to take a hard line when it comes to negotiating with the other side. If they present the option for settlement, that’s a good indication that they fear taking the case to trial. This puts you in control of the situation to a large extent and provides leverage.
Get the Right Injury Lawyer
Some lawyers will take on clients with a guarantee that they will not be paid unless they win damages in court. This is known in the industry as no-win no-fee injury lawyer. With these attorneys, if you don’t win any money in your personal injury case, you don’t owe the lawyer anything. If you have a rock-solid case, the attorney in this instance will operate on the assumption that a victory is likely and will therefore assume the risk of doing the legal work with the possibility of walking away empty-handed.
A serious injury can become expensive fast. On top of your medical bills, you may also lose wages due to taking time off work to heal, and your other bills may start to pile up. You may be able to cover these costs though with compensation from pursuing a personal injury case. Although the cost of pursuing justice does present some challenges, always remember that you do have options for winning the compensation that you are entitled to under the law.
Author information: Anita is a freelance writer from Denver, CO. She studied at Colorado State University and now writes articles about health, business, family, and finance. A mother of two, she enjoys traveling with her family whenever she isn’t writing. You can follow her on Twitter @anitaginsburg.