Is It Better to Settle or Go to Court for a Personal Injury Case?


Are you planning to file a personal injury claim? Before you proceed, you have to choose between settling with the other party or going to court to get the compensation you deserve.

Now, you may ask how different pre-trial settlements and court trials are.

You may also wonder which is a better option for your case and what you should opt for.

Read on to know more about these two options. Moreover, consult with a Burbank personal injury attorney to get advice that fits your case.

Understanding Pre-Trial Settlement and Court Trial

  • Pre-Trial Settlements


Settlement is the pre-trial negotiation wherein you and the other party work out the compensation payments.

Here your lawyer will send a demand letter to the defendant’s party. It contains the amount you ask for compensation and enough legal arguments to support your demand. Your legal counsel will also attach enough evidence, like medical reports, treatment records, and bills.

The defense lawyer will then reply to your demand letter and start negotiating. They will try to reduce the compensation amount, while your legal representative will increase it as much as possible.

The goal of the settlement is to reach an agreement before going to court. Going to court is a better option if you fail to settle your compensation during the pre-trial procedures.

  • Court Trial


A court trial revolves around presenting a case to a presiding judge. You and your attorney will bring up your compensation claim, while the defendant will try to disprove your demand.

The judge will decide if the defendant is indeed liable for damages. The jury will also determine and award the compensation amount you deserve, which could be significantly higher or lower than you claim.

Choosing Between Settlement and Court Trial for Your Case

These essential factors will help you choose between pre-trial settlement and court trial for your injury case:

  • Duration of the Process


In general, pre-trial settlements are quicker because they only take a few days or weeks to complete. On the other hand, court trials may last for a few months or years and are more complicated than settlements.

It means you should only go to court if you have enough reason for doing so. The following points help determine if your case should go to court or not.

  • The Seriousness of Your Case

The gravity of your case may also make it necessary to head to court.

For example, you sustain life-threatening injuries resulting in significant disabilities like paralysis.

In that case, you have to claim a significant compensation amount, and the defendant should be penalized. Your case may even become a basis for a new law.

So generally, a pre-trial settlement is perfect if you have a less significant case.

An example is when you sustain only a minor leg injury from a slip and fall accident. In this case, it may not be worth going through the hassles and costs of a court trial for your case. This is when you should aim for a settlement agreement instead.

  • Negotiation Results

social security disability lawyer

You may go to court if the other party doesn’t agree on the negotiations and compensation amount you demand. If the other party’s insurance provider denies your claim, you may also go to court.

Call a Personal Injury Lawyer in Burbank to Know What’s Best for Your Case

In general, legal experts want to avoid court trials because of the highly complicated processes. However, your case may make you choose between a settlement or court trial to get the compensation you deserve.

So, hire a Burbank personal injury attorney to make the correct choice and optimize your case.

Scroll to top