Do I Have To Go to Court If I Hire an Attorney in Florida?
The vast majority of personal injury cases settle out of court following negotiations with the insurance company. Sometimes, however, a personal injury claim will progress from pre-suit, to litigation, to mediation, and finally, to trial.
That begs the question: Must you appear in court if you’ve hired an attorney to represent you in your personal injury lawsuit?
Do You Have To Appear in Court When You File a Personal Injury Claim?
Imagine you find yourself in a situation where you’ve been injured as a result of someone else’s actions or negligence. Fortunately, under Florida law, you have the right to file a personal injury claim. However, there’s a common misconception that pursuing such a claim automatically means going to court. In reality, the majority of these cases are settled before reaching the litigation stage. So, there’s no need to let the fear of a courtroom prevent you from seeking the justice you deserve.
How Does a Personal Injury Claim Work in Florida?
If you haven’t already filed a claim with your insurance company, you may choose to hire a personal injury attorney with experience in your types of cases. Then, the attorney can handle the negotiations on your behalf. Hiring an attorney does not mean you will need to go to court.
Injuries – as a result of negligence from a third party – are often filed through the at-fault’s auto owners insurance policy. If you hire a personal injury lawyer, he or she will make sure that the claim is directed to the right insurance company, or possibly several companies.
In cases where the negligent party is not covered by insurance, your attorney can still be of service. When a claim is filed, this will initiate the settlement negotiation process. While it may take time to reach a settlement, most personal injury cases are resolved in this manner as opposed to proceeding to court.
However, if the insurance company or responsible party is unwilling to settle for a fair amount, you have the right to pursue your claim in court. Your attorney will ensure that your lawsuit is filed within Florida’s personal injury statute of limitations and can then begin to prepare your case for trial. You may or may not choose to appear in court, this is an option that a personal injury attorney can clarify with you.
Why Do Most Personal Injury Cases Settle?
The settlement of personal injury cases is the most common outcome due to the advantages for both parties involved. Settling allows for a faster resolution and is generally less expensive as opposed to going to court. In addition, if your case settles pre-suit, as opposed to in-suit, the contingency fee is lower (33.33% as opposed to 40%).
Your lawyer will advise whether your participation is required. You may opt to be present at all stages of your lawsuit. In any case, you should always check with your attorney to ensure whether it will help your case to be present in court.
Do You Need a Personal Injury Lawyer? Call Us Today
At Lyons & Snyder, our skilled trial lawyers can represent you at all stages of your personal injury claim.
We can also advise you on any aspect of your claim — including whether the statute of limitations has passed and whether you may be able to seek additional compensation.
To learn more about our services and how we can assist you, call 954-462-8035 today or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.