Battle Born Injury Lawyers | September 9, 2022 | Personal Injury
During the pre-litigation phase of your personal injury case, you will need to seek medical treatment, investigate your claim, send a demand letter to the liable party, and start settlement negotiations. Eventually, you might have no choice but to commence litigation by filing a lawsuit. Even then, eventual settlement is far from out of the question.
Seek Medical Treatment
Immediate medical treatment must be your first priority for medical and legal reasons. Immediately seeking medical care helps prevent the opposing party from claiming that the accident in question did not cause your injuries. Additionally, medical records are among the most credible forms of evidence.
The Preliminary Investigation
Before contacting the liable party, your lawyer should perform a preliminary investigation of your claim.
The investigation might include:
- Taking photos at the scene of the accident
- Gathering accident reports filed by the police and people involved in the accident (drivers in a car accident, for example)
- Identifying all possible at-fault parties
- Finding and interviewing witnesses to the accident
- Obtaining medical bills and records
- Collecting any obvious evidence of the accident, such as CCTV footage
Your lawyer might take many other steps, depending on the circumstances of your case.
Drafting and Sending the Demand Letter
Sending a demand letter – typically to an insurance company – starts the negotiating process.
A demand letter typically includes:
- A description of your injuries
- Why the other party is responsible for these injuries
- The type of medical treatment you received
- The amount of your medical bills
- The amount of your lost earnings
- A description of your other losses (pain and suffering, for example)
- A demand for compensation
Some lawyers will include a specific dollar amount in the demand letter, while others wait for the opposing party to make the first offer. You can be confident that the first offer will not be the last one.
A settlement agreement is a binding legal contract you can enforce in court. Your lawyer should either draft the settlement agreement or review and approve it before you sign it.
Beware the Insurance Adjuster’s Strategies to Undervalue Your Claim
The best reason to hire a lawyer during the pre-litigation phase of settlement is that the insurance adjuster – the person who represents the insurance company – is probably a skilled negotiator.
Following are some common tricks that insurance adjusters like to use:
- Blaming you for the accident
- Asserting that a previous accident caused your injuries
- Taking a recorded statement from you and then asking you trick questions
- Spying on your social media accounts
- Hiring a private investigator to snoop into your life (if your claim is large)
The preceding five strategies are only a sample of tactics an insurance adjuster might use. A skilled personal injury lawyer will recognize every single one of them.
Most Personal Injury Cases Settle Out of Court
The great majority of personal injury claims do not go to trial.
These include claims that settle:
- Before the victim files a lawsuit
- After the victim files a lawsuit but before trial
- During mediation (either before or after the victim files a lawsuit)
- During trial
Courts tend to pressure parties to settle their claim because settlement reduces the court’s busy docket.
Seek a Free Consultation With a Lawyer to Discuss Your Personal Injury Case and What to Expect During the Pre-Litigation Phase
Almost any personal injury lawyer in Las Vegas will be willing to discuss your case in a free consultation. The lawyer will want to know whether your claim is viable and how much it is worth. Under the contingency fee arrangement that most personal injury lawyers use, you won’t owe a dime in legal fees until and unless your lawyer wins your claim.
Contact the Las Vegas Personal Injury Attorneys at Battle Born Injury Lawyers Today
If you or a loved one were injured in an accident in Las Vegas and you need legal assistance, contact our personal injury attorneys at Battle Born Injury Lawyers and schedule a free consultation with our legal team.