Settle car case or go to court

Kansas City Car Accident Attorney

After a car accident, you may find yourself physically, emotionally, and financially drained. You may need to choose between settling your case with the insurance company or taking it to court. It's an important choice because once you settle, there's no going back. Let’s explore the factors you should consider when making this decision, including the value of your past and future damages, how to identify a fair settlement, the court process, and what role a Kansas City car accident lawyer from Foster Wallace, LLC can play.

One Chance to Settle

One of the most daunting aspects of handling a car accident case is the realization that you have just one opportunity to settle it. This one-chance dilemma can be a double-edged sword – on the one hand, it offers closure and a swift resolution to the often-arduous legal process, but on the other hand, it carries the risk of leaving you under-compensated for your injuries and losses.

Once you agree to a settlement, whether directly with the at-fault party's insurance company or through negotiations with your own insurer, it comes with a binding legal agreement. In essence, you are agreeing to accept a specific amount of money as compensation for your injuries, property damage, and any other losses incurred due to the accident. Importantly, this agreement usually includes a release of liability clause, which means that in exchange for the settlement amount, you waive your right to seek any further compensation related to the accident, regardless of any subsequent developments.

These are things the insurance company doesn’t want you to know when fighting for compensation. At Foster Wallace, LLC, we aim to educate and guide accident victims about their legal options so they can make the most informed decisions possible.

Past and Future Damages

When facing the decision of whether to settle your Kansas City car accident case or go to court, it's crucial to have a comprehensive understanding of the various types of damages to which you may be entitled. Your compensation should cover not only the immediate expenses resulting from the accident but also the long-term repercussions that can significantly impact your life. Here's a closer look at the categories of damages you should consider:

Medical Expenses

This is perhaps the most obvious category of damages. It encompasses all the costs related to your medical treatment, including ambulance fees, hospital bills, surgical procedures, prescription medications, rehabilitation, and therapy. It's a good idea to keep records of all medical expenses, as they are quantifiable and typically make up a substantial part of your claim.

Property Damage 

If your vehicle or personal property was damaged in the accident, you are entitled to compensation for repairs or replacement. Document the extent of the damage and keep records of repair estimates and receipts to support your claim.

Lost Wages

The injuries sustained in a Missouri car accident can lead to time off work for recovery. You may be entitled to compensation for the income you've lost during this period. Your Missouri car accident lawyer can help you calculate this figure accurately, considering factors such as your salary, employment benefits, and any potential career advancement opportunities you've missed.

Pain and Suffering

This is a more subjective category of damages and encompasses the physical and emotional distress you've experienced due to the accident. It can be challenging to put a dollar amount on pain and suffering, but it's a critical component of your claim. A Kansas City car accident lawyer will employ various methods to assess and quantify this aspect of your damages.

Future Medical Costs and Long-Term Disability

In many cases, the effects of a severe car accident can extend far into the future. You may require ongoing medical treatment and rehabilitation or even face long-term disability that affects your earning potential and quality of life. Anticipating these future costs is essential, and a skilled attorney can work with medical experts and economists to estimate these expenses accurately.

Pursuing a Fair Settlement

Determining what constitutes a fair settlement can be complex and fraught with challenges. Insurance companies are notorious for striving to settle claims for the lowest possible amount to protect their financial interests. To ensure that your rights are protected and that you receive the compensation you genuinely deserve, it's not just wise but often essential to consult with a Missouri car accident lawyer.

A Kansas City car accident lawyer from Foster Wallace, LLC can provide you with a professional evaluation of any proposed settlement. We will compare the offer to the actual value of your damages and advise you on whether it adequately covers your losses. If it falls short, your lawyer will push for a better offer or recommend pursuing litigation.

Our team of experienced lawyers can effectively communicate with insurance adjusters and other parties involved. We understand the tactics used by insurance companies to minimize payouts and can counter with persuasive arguments to secure a fair settlement. It’s how we secured a $100,000 settlement for a family of four injured in a Kansas City car crash.

Escalating to Court Proceedings

The vast majority of car accident claims are settled out of the courtroom. This approach offers several advantages, including faster resolution, reduced stress, and minimized legal expenses. However, in some cases, reaching a fair settlement agreement with the insurance company may prove elusive. When negotiations break down or the offered settlement is insufficient to cover your damages adequately, the next step is to escalate the matter to court proceedings.

If you decide to take your Kansas car accident case to court, it's essential to understand the legal process involved. Court proceedings can be lengthy and complicated, involving various stages such as filing a complaint, discovery, pre-trial motions, and trial. A Missouri car accident lawyer can guide you through each step, ensuring you have the best possible chance of success.

The Role of a Car Accident Lawyer

A Kansas City car accident lawyer is a valuable ally in your pursuit of justice and fair compensation. The team at Foster Wallace, LLC has the legal expertise to assess your case, negotiate with insurance companies, and represent you in court if necessary. Our knowledge of personal injury law and experience in handling car accident cases helps us guide you toward making the right decision.

Ultimately, the decision to settle or go to court should be made in consultation with your lawyer, who can provide you with a clear understanding of your case's strengths and weaknesses, potential outcomes in court, and the likelihood of securing a fair settlement. Your lawyer's guidance is instrumental in making an informed choice that best serves your interests.

Brian Wallace
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Kansas City Personal Injury Attorney