The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. Articles How Will My St. Louis Car Injury Case Play Out?

How Will My St. Louis Car Injury Case Play Out?

By Christopher Hoffmann  May. 31, 2019 8:52a

So you’ve been the victim of a St. Louis car accident, suffered injuries and property damages, and want to make the party responsible pay for the harm they caused you. You may expect to have to go to court and present your case in front of a judge and jury like in the movies, but that might not be the case.

In fact, most car accident injury cases never go to trial but are instead settled by the parties involved.

What Usually Happens

Most car accident cases in Missouri don’t see a day in court. They are handled through the at-fault party’s insurance company since auto insurance is mandatory in the state. You will have to negotiate a settlement with the insurance company, and present evidence backing up what you're asking for, while the adjuster will try to lower the amount of damages awarded as much as possible.

This is often seen as the ideal solution in these case, and sometimes even the fastest one to get the issue resolved, since the courts may be frequently backed up by large caseloads. However, one reason why you may go to court is that you simply cannot reach a settlement with the insurance company.

When to Go to Trial

When each side doesn’t budge, it can take even months to settle a car accident case. As a result, you may decide you want a judge and jury to rule and take your chances there. Lawyers may use this as a tactic to show insurance companies they are serious about their intent and file a lawsuit just to get the adjuster to offer a higher settlement, even if they maybe have no intention of presenting the case in court.

Another reason why you may file a lawsuit against the other driver is if they are uninsured, and as a result, don’t have a policy to cover the costs of your medical treatment. Then, you may take the matter to court, where a judge can rule that plaintiff has to give you a certain amount of damages.

Considering the driver may not have auto insurance because they cannot afford it, it most likely also means they will not be able to pay any damages out of pocket, even if ordered by a judge.

Some lawsuits can take a long time to resolve, and the final say may belong to the jury, which can sometimes be unpredictable. As such, even if you present your case with enough evidence, if the other side is more convincing, the jury may rule in their favor.

Speak with an attorney

If you have been invovled in a St. Louis auto accident, speak with a St. Louis auto accident lawyer as soon as possible to learn more about your options and what you are legally entiteld to. Call (314) 361-4242 for a FREE case evaluation.

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