After you have a car accident or you are injured at work, you might be full of fear about how long the court process is going to take in a personal injury case. Will you have personal injury settlement or will you go to trial? You need the compensation now and time to get back to work or your normal routine. It might ease your nerves to know that only 4-5% of personal injury cases actually go to trial. The other 95% are settled. However, if your case is not settling quickly, then you might head into mediation.
Mediation and Personal Injury Settlements
Mediation is one of the greatest tools when two parties are having a hard time settling a dispute. Like court, the two parties meet in a room and have third party act as the authority (the mediator) between the two; however the difference is that there is no verdict. It is only another attempt for the two parties to come to an agreement.
The mediator lets the two parties each give their side of the dispute and recognizes the difference among the two. Usually the two parties go into separate room and the mediator, having been briefed on the case, will write up a proposed agreement and the two parties will debate until they have changed the proposal to suit their needs and desires. Mediation is not a process to say who is right and who is wrong, but, instead, works to maintain a future relationship between the parties and find common ground collaboratively. It does not pin two parties against each other in a confrontational way.
Mediation, like court, costs money but it is not as time consuming. If both parties are organized and educated on the case, then, usually, both want to make an agreement at the end of the day. It’s possible that the parties will never agree and then you will have to go to trial. However, as we have seen from the statistics, this is usually not the case.
Stay Organized and Positive
After hiring a lawyer to defend your personal injury case, the best thing you can do is gather all the information surrounding your accident and work with your lawyer to ensure you have taken all the steps to show the opposing party your situation and why your claim needs to be paid. Let your lawyer do his job, but stay involved in the whole process.
If your case does not settle as quickly as you would like, you might head into mediation where you are almost guaranteed to reach an agreement. Remember 95% of cases settle before court. So keep at calm, organized, and positive.