the Monsees and Mayer team together

Welcome to our General Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page. Your go-to source for answers to the most common questions about your legal matters. Whether you are curious about your rights, legal processes or simply trying to understand, this page will help.

We’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions to provide you with straightforward and easy to understand answers. Our purpose is to ensure that you understand and can make navigate decisions and challenges with confidence.

If you don’t find the information you need, please don’t hesitate to contact our team for personalized guidance.

General Frequently Asked Questions

I have been injured- what are my legal rights?

You have the right to seek adequate and fair compensation for the damages caused by your injury from any responsible party, which typically includes past and future economic damages (medical expenses, lost wages or salary, etc.) and past and future non-economic damages (pain and suffering, scarring or disfigurement, emotional or psychological trauma, etc.) But this right is only as good as your ability to enforce it through our civil justice system. You have constitutional right to a trial by a jury of your peers which is the mechanism that actually causes most cases to settle. Responsible parties make settlement offers in order to avoid the risks of being judged by a jury made up of regular citizens exercising their common sense under the law.

Do I need a personal injury attorney?

You should always consult a lawyer to explain your legal rights and responsibilities so that you know your options. Then you can make your own decision. We a free consultation for this purpose, as well as to determine if you would benefit from legal representation. There are some cases which do not require an attorney, usually because of limited damages or insurance coverage. There are other cases in which an attorney is invaluable, typically because of liability disputes, serious injuries, unknown insurance coverage or other complex legal issues. In our initial consultation we advise you whether we think you need a lawyer to represent you or whether you can handle the claim on your own. The key question is whether an attorney can do substantially better pursuing your legal claim than you can do on your own. We bring the threat of trial by jury to the table which often is enough to force reasonable minds to prevail and settle the case. If not, we can try the case which clients usually cannot do on their own.

LEARN MORE ABOUT PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEYS

How can a lawyer help with my personal injury claim?

Preparation, presentation and persistence. People who have been injured usually have other things on their mind such as healing physically and emotionally, returning to work, caring for families, or otherwise rebuilding their everyday lives. These are more important than dealing with insurance adjusters or defense counsel whose job it is to question your claim, minimize your damages, or even prevent you from making any recovery to save money for their insurance company. Our job is just the opposite, to develop your case, both regarding liability and damages to maximize your monetary recovery under the law.

LEARN MORE ABOUT WHY HIRING THE RIGHT PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY MATTERS

Are there some cases I can or should handle myself?

While there is no hard and fast rule, we usually tell clients that minor injury matters are best handled through your local county small claims court, which does not require a lawyer. The circuit clerk in your county is required by law to assist you in filing a small claims petition and serving the other side. You usually receive a prompt hearing before a judge which is very much like the “Peoples Court” television program except you have the right to ask questions of the other side as they do of you. There are other situations in which you may not need a lawyer such as when your damages easily exceed the available insurance coverage, but even then you may need to talk to an attorney to determine what insurance coverage is available and whether there are any other source of compensation to pay for your damages. Our best advice is for you to contact a lawyer in any event, so that you know what your options are and can make an informed decision before proceeding with your claim. One of the biggest problems we run into are clients who have attempted to handle their own claims before consulting an attorney and as a result have given away important legal rights or have undervalued their case so that it is difficult, if not impossible for an attorney to get fair compensation.

LEARN THE TOP REASONS TO HIRE AN EXPERIENCED ATTORNEY

The insurance adjuster says that I do not need a lawyer- do I?

While the insurance adjuster may be right, this comment should always raise a red flag telling you to at least consult an attorney. Remember, insurance companies are not on your side despite trite slogans such as “You’re in Good Hands with Allstate” or “State Farm is There” An insurance adjuster, even one for your own insurance company does not act in your best interest. In fact, adjusters are evaluated by how well they protect their employer’s interest by saving it money. To the contrary, personal injury attorneys have a legal and ethical duty to act in the best interests of their clients. We work for you and part of our job is to advise you whether and to what extent you need our help.

Are there time limits for pursuing my claim?

Yes and they are very important. All legal claims are governed by statutes of limitations which are time periods in which a lawsuit must be filed or you will lose your claims. These time periods are different in each state and vary by the particular legal claims you can make. It is important that you consult with an attorney as soon as possible so you do not lose your legal rights.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS (SOL)

How are attorneys paid in personal injury matters?

Usually through the contingent fee system, although you can pay an attorney hourly to handle your claim. But contingent fees are really what makes the system work because you do not have to pay your lawyer unless a recovery is made. Even then the fee is a percent of the amount of money the attorney recovers for you and if no recovery is made, you owe no attorney fee. Without this system, most people would be precluded from pursuing their claims in court or otherwise because of the cost of litigation, even on simple cases can amount to many of thousands of dollars with no guarantee of a recovery. In the contingent fee system, the attorney takes the financial risk and consequently, we have a significant incentive to produce results for you as that is how we are paid.

LEARN MORE ABOUT CONTINGENCY FEES

Are there any other costs required to pursue my claim?

Yes. Nothing is free including your access to the legal system. However, most plaintiffs law firms will advance the expenses necessary to pursue your claim so you do not incur any out of pocket cost. Some firms, like ours, that focus on representing plaintiffs in personal injury matters will even make their recovery of these costs contingent on the outcome so that if no recovery is made you do not have to reimburse any money advanced.  Some of the costs incurred merely to settle the case include investigating and preserving the accident scene, ordering medical records and bills and consulting with experts as needed, all of which can cost from several hundred dollars to several thousand. If a lawsuit is filed the costs go up from there beginning with the filing fee payable to the court and continuing through court reporter fees for depositions, paying your treating doctors for their time to testify, retaining other experts to testify on various issues and numerous other expenses. Litigation expenses can easily add up to tens of thousands of dollars or more depending upon the complexity of the case. Finally, while the losing party does not generally have to pay the winning party’s attorney fees, the court can order the losing party to pay for certain, limited costs incurred by the winning party, including transcript charges, subpoena fees and juror compensation. These court costs, which the losing party may be ordered to pay, is your only financial risk and they only arise if the case is tried and lost, as opposed to settled

Do I need to have a written agreement with my attorney?

Yes, for your own benefit so that you know what the relationship is between you and your attorney. In turn, most states’ ethical rules require attorneys representing clients on a contingent fee basis to enter into a written agreement for that reason. Be sure to read the attorney/client contract before you sign it and ask any questions so that you understand this arrangement. Most plaintiffs’ attorneys have a standard form contract that meets state ethical requirements and varies little from case to case. However, if you have any concerns, never sign a contract when presented but have it reviewed by someone you trust including another attorney if you so choose. Two areas of particular note are the attorney fee percentages and how costs are handled. While attorney fees can and do vary by a few percentage points between firms, you should never pick an attorney solely on the basis of who has the lowest contingent fee. Remember, the other and greater factor in the equation which determines the amount of your compensation is how much the attorney recovers for you. You will be many dollars ahead with a firm that recovers more money, even if you have to pay a slightly higher contingent fee. When you hire a law firm you are paying for their reputation as well as their efforts on your behalf. The insurance companies know well the lawyers who make claims against them, as do the defense counsel they hire. If the insurance company or defense counsel knows that your law firm will try your case, then they will treat it differently than those handled by attorneys who never take their cases to trial. The threat of litigation is the great equalizing factor that forces fair settlements, but the threat must be real. Beware of those attorneys who advertise heavily, work on a volume of cases and routinely drop clients if they cannot settle their cases quickly and usually cheaply.

How does the legal process work to resolve a personal injury claim?

There are two ways a claim is resolved-by settlement or through trial. Some cases have a better chance of settling than others. If there is a realistic possibility of settlement, we will usually try that option first as it is the most beneficial and the least risky for you. However, the threat of trial is what drives settlement. The knowledge that a law firm will try a case is what causes the responsible party, or its insurance company, to pay full and fair compensation for your injuries. Frankly, some cases are not economically feasible to try due to the cost of litigation. We try to limit our practice to only representing victims of sexual abuse, serious personal injury, and wrongful death claims so that most cases can be tried if not settled. Your attorney’s job is to recommend the best course of action possible given the circumstances of your case–then pursue that course to a favorable conclusion through trial or settlement.

What happens in a lawsuit?

A lot, most of which you will not experience unless you want to. Typically, your direct involvement in the legal process happens during discovery when you answer written questions (called interrogatories) and respond to requests for production of documents and other things. Next, you may be called upon to give your deposition to the opposing counsel in the presence of your attorney, which involves a face-to-face question and answer session on the record. Finally, there is trial during which you will have to explain what happened and present your claim for damages. Most other pre-trial matters can be handled by your attorney. Your attorney should maintain an open line of contact with you to discuss various matters from factual information to ongoing settlement and trial strategy. However, your level of participation, beyond answering discovery requests, participating in your deposition, and potentially mediation, is entirely up to you.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE TIMELINE OF A LAWSUIT

What happens if the case is lost in court?

Again, “loss” is a relative term in that some cases are lost because the amount recovered is inadequate compensation for your damages or may be less that was offered by way of settlement prior to trial. However, in a situation where the case is a total loss in that the jury does not find anyone else at fault then you make no recovery. If you have a contingent fee agreement with your law firm and any costs advanced were to be repaid only if you win, then you owe the law firm nothing. However, one of the risks of trial is the assessment of “court costs” to the losing party. Court costs include certain costs of trying the case such as the jurors’ daily fees, the costs of subpoenaing witnesses to testify and the expense of depositions which may be used at trial, as well as a limited number of other items. While the other side will sometimes waive recovering these costs if you do not prevail, in particular if you agree not to appeal the trial court judgment, there is no guarantee. Of course, if you have a solid basis for an appeal, you may not want to exchange that right for a waiver of court costs.

Will I have to go to court?

If your case is tried you will have to testify to explain the accident and how it has affected you and your family. Otherwise, you will probably never have to “go to court” as most court matters are handled by your attorney. You can always settle your case if you do not want to appear at trial, but you should never settle a case merely because of fear of “going to court”. Your attorneys will help you prepare for any court appearances or other aspects of your case in which you may be involved and will be there to help you through them. Typically, your only involvement in the lawsuit prior to trial will be to answer some written questions, provide relevant documents, give your deposition if requested and otherwise consult with counsel. Our goal is to make the litigation process as easy on our clients as possible so that they can make a rational decision about whether to settle their case or try it, rather than one made solely out of fear.

What kind of injuries and damages can I recover for?

You can recover for any injuries or damages that were caused or contributed to by the fault of another, whether they can be reduced to a specific dollar amount such as medical bills or lost income or involve non-economic damages sometimes referred to as pain and suffering. Typical economic damages in a personal injury case include medical and related health care costs as well as any lost wages, salary or other income. Non-economic damages are much broader but more difficult to quantify because they include such things as the pain you have suffered; the inability to do things you did before your accident; scarring or disfigurement; mental or emotional distress; and the consequences experienced by your spouse and sometimes your family. All of these damages have both a past and future component. Past economic damages can be proved by actual bills or tax returns. Future damages are usually estimated based on past experience, sometimes using an expert economist or doctor.

LEARN MORE ABOUT WHAT IS CONSIDERED DAMAGES

How much is my case worth?

That depends entirely on the facts–both liability (fault) and injuries (damages). But ultimately your case is worth exactly as much as the jury says it is worth, no more and no less. Settlements occur when the parties’ opinions about the potential jury verdict are close enough that they realize that trial would be a waste of time, effort, and money for all concerned. The only way to evaluate a case to determine what it may be worth is to fully investigate the cause, develop the damages, research the law, and evaluate a number of other factors from the parties’ background and the attorneys’ experience to the county in which the case will be filed and the judge who will try it. While there are broad ranges of values depending upon the clarity of liability and the nature and extent of the damages, there are no books, databases, or other tools that place a specific value on each case. The variables are too many and too complex. Rather, cases are evaluated and valued by your attorney after they have collected all the necessary information and filtered it through their years of experience.

How long will it take to complete my case?

Here the answer is the same–that depends on the circumstances of your case and what you decide to do with it. There is simply no way to predict at the outset exactly how long a case will take other than to estimate average time lengths for settlement and trial. Since it takes several months to investigate and evaluate a case and several more months for the other side to do the same after an offer is made, most settlements take at least four to six months. Trial on the other hand requires a lot more time and effort to steer your case through the legal system and consequently the earliest a personal injury case can be tried is usually a year from the date work began and often longer. If the case is appealed, add another year on to the process and any retrial takes even longer. Settlement is faster than trial but there is no guarantee that settlement will occur. Whereas, if you try the case you will get a judgment, one way or another. Settlement and trial are not mutually exclusive in that many lawsuits are filed but settled before they are tried. Sometimes it is beneficial to file a case before you see if it can be settled. Other times it is a better idea to try to settle a case before you incur the costs of litigation. Only after we have fully investigated your case can we make recommendations on how to proceed and give you any idea of the time frame for completion.

What is Mediation?

Our attorney and founding shareholder, Tim Monsees, explains what a mediation is and breaks down the guidelines for potential plaintiffs in this video. If you are interested in learning more about how to prepare for a personal injury case, you can contact us for a booklet today.

Resources to Explore

More Videos

the Monsees and Mayer team together

Welcome to our General Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page. Your go-to source for answers to the most common questions about your legal matters. Whether you are curious about your rights, legal processes or simply trying to understand, this page will help.

We’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions to provide you with straightforward and easy to understand answers. Our purpose is to ensure that you understand and can make navigate decisions and challenges with confidence.

If you don’t find the information you need, please don’t hesitate to contact our team for personalized guidance.

What is Mediation?

Our attorney and founding shareholder, Tim Monsees, explains what a mediation is and breaks down the guidelines for potential plaintiffs in this video. If you are interested in learning more about how to prepare for a personal injury case, you can contact us for a booklet today.

More Videos

What is Deposition?

Our founding shareholder, Tim Monsees, explains the key reminders to understand before a deposition.

What is the Difference Between Civil and Criminal Cases?

Our founding shareholder, Tim Monsees, shares the major differences between filing a civil and a criminal case.

General FAQs

I have been injured- what are my legal rights?

You have the right to seek adequate and fair compensation for the damages caused by your injury from any responsible party, which typically includes past and future economic damages (medical expenses, lost wages or salary, etc.) and past and future non-economic damages (pain and suffering, scarring or disfigurement, emotional or psychological trauma, etc.) But this right is only as good as your ability to enforce it through our civil justice system. You have constitutional right to a trial by a jury of your peers which is the mechanism that actually causes most cases to settle. Responsible parties make settlement offers in order to avoid the risks of being judged by a jury made up of regular citizens exercising their common sense under the law.

Do I need a personal injury attorney?

You should always consult a lawyer to explain your legal rights and responsibilities so that you know your options. Then you can make your own decision. We a free consultation for this purpose, as well as to determine if you would benefit from legal representation. There are some cases which do not require an attorney, usually because of limited damages or insurance coverage. There are other cases in which an attorney is invaluable, typically because of liability disputes, serious injuries, unknown insurance coverage or other complex legal issues. In our initial consultation we advise you whether we think you need a lawyer to represent you or whether you can handle the claim on your own. The key question is whether an attorney can do substantially better pursuing your legal claim than you can do on your own. We bring the threat of trial by jury to the table which often is enough to force reasonable minds to prevail and settle the case. If not, we can try the case which clients usually cannot do on their own.

LEARN MORE ABOUT PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEYS

How can a lawyer help with my personal injury claim?

Preparation, presentation and persistence. People who have been injured usually have other things on their mind such as healing physically and emotionally, returning to work, caring for families, or otherwise rebuilding their everyday lives. These are more important than dealing with insurance adjusters or defense counsel whose job it is to question your claim, minimize your damages, or even prevent you from making any recovery to save money for their insurance company. Our job is just the opposite, to develop your case, both regarding liability and damages to maximize your monetary recovery under the law.

LEARN MORE ABOUT WHY HIRING THE RIGHT PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY MATTERS

Are there some cases I can or should handle myself?

While there is no hard and fast rule, we usually tell clients that minor injury matters are best handled through your local county small claims court, which does not require a lawyer. The circuit clerk in your county is required by law to assist you in filing a small claims petition and serving the other side. You usually receive a prompt hearing before a judge which is very much like the “Peoples Court” television program except you have the right to ask questions of the other side as they do of you. There are other situations in which you may not need a lawyer such as when your damages easily exceed the available insurance coverage, but even then you may need to talk to an attorney to determine what insurance coverage is available and whether there are any other source of compensation to pay for your damages. Our best advice is for you to contact a lawyer in any event, so that you know what your options are and can make an informed decision before proceeding with your claim. One of the biggest problems we run into are clients who have attempted to handle their own claims before consulting an attorney and as a result have given away important legal rights or have undervalued their case so that it is difficult, if not impossible for an attorney to get fair compensation.

LEARN THE TOP REASONS TO HIRE AN EXPERIENCED ATTORNEY

The insurance adjuster says that I do not need a lawyer- do I?

While the insurance adjuster may be right, this comment should always raise a red flag telling you to at least consult an attorney. Remember, insurance companies are not on your side despite trite slogans such as “You’re in Good Hands with Allstate” or “State Farm is There” An insurance adjuster, even one for your own insurance company does not act in your best interest. In fact, adjusters are evaluated by how well they protect their employer’s interest by saving it money. To the contrary, personal injury attorneys have a legal and ethical duty to act in the best interests of their clients. We work for you and part of our job is to advise you whether and to what extent you need our help.

Are there time limits for pursuing my claim?

Yes and they are very important. All legal claims are governed by statutes of limitations which are time periods in which a lawsuit must be filed or you will lose your claims. These time periods are different in each state and vary by the particular legal claims you can make. It is important that you consult with an attorney as soon as possible so you do not lose your legal rights.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS (SOL)

How are attorneys paid in personal injury matters?

Usually through the contingent fee system, although you can pay an attorney hourly to handle your claim. But contingent fees are really what makes the system work because you do not have to pay your lawyer unless a recovery is made. Even then the fee is a percent of the amount of money the attorney recovers for you and if no recovery is made, you owe no attorney fee. Without this system, most people would be precluded from pursuing their claims in court or otherwise because of the cost of litigation, even on simple cases can amount to many of thousands of dollars with no guarantee of a recovery. In the contingent fee system, the attorney takes the financial risk and consequently, we have a significant incentive to produce results for you as that is how we are paid.

LEARN MORE ABOUT CONTINGENCY FEES

Are there any other costs required to pursue my claim?

Yes. Nothing is free including your access to the legal system. However, most plaintiffs law firms will advance the expenses necessary to pursue your claim so you do not incur any out of pocket cost. Some firms, like ours, that focus on representing plaintiffs in personal injury matters will even make their recovery of these costs contingent on the outcome so that if no recovery is made you do not have to reimburse any money advanced.  Some of the costs incurred merely to settle the case include investigating and preserving the accident scene, ordering medical records and bills and consulting with experts as needed, all of which can cost from several hundred dollars to several thousand. If a lawsuit is filed the costs go up from there beginning with the filing fee payable to the court and continuing through court reporter fees for depositions, paying your treating doctors for their time to testify, retaining other experts to testify on various issues and numerous other expenses. Litigation expenses can easily add up to tens of thousands of dollars or more depending upon the complexity of the case. Finally, while the losing party does not generally have to pay the winning party’s attorney fees, the court can order the losing party to pay for certain, limited costs incurred by the winning party, including transcript charges, subpoena fees and juror compensation. These court costs, which the losing party may be ordered to pay, is your only financial risk and they only arise if the case is tried and lost, as opposed to settled

Do I need to have a written agreement with my attorney?

Yes, for your own benefit so that you know what the relationship is between you and your attorney. In turn, most states’ ethical rules require attorneys representing clients on a contingent fee basis to enter into a written agreement for that reason. Be sure to read the attorney/client contract before you sign it and ask any questions so that you understand this arrangement. Most plaintiffs’ attorneys have a standard form contract that meets state ethical requirements and varies little from case to case. However, if you have any concerns, never sign a contract when presented but have it reviewed by someone you trust including another attorney if you so choose. Two areas of particular note are the attorney fee percentages and how costs are handled. While attorney fees can and do vary by a few percentage points between firms, you should never pick an attorney solely on the basis of who has the lowest contingent fee. Remember, the other and greater factor in the equation which determines the amount of your compensation is how much the attorney recovers for you. You will be many dollars ahead with a firm that recovers more money, even if you have to pay a slightly higher contingent fee. When you hire a law firm you are paying for their reputation as well as their efforts on your behalf. The insurance companies know well the lawyers who make claims against them, as do the defense counsel they hire. If the insurance company or defense counsel knows that your law firm will try your case, then they will treat it differently than those handled by attorneys who never take their cases to trial. The threat of litigation is the great equalizing factor that forces fair settlements, but the threat must be real. Beware of those attorneys who advertise heavily, work on a volume of cases and routinely drop clients if they cannot settle their cases quickly and usually cheaply.

How does the legal process work to resolve a personal injury claim?

There are two ways a claim is resolved-by settlement or through trial. Some cases have a better chance of settling than others. If there is a realistic possibility of settlement, we will usually try that option first as it is the most beneficial and the least risky for you. However, the threat of trial is what drives settlement. The knowledge that a law firm will try a case is what causes the responsible party, or its insurance company, to pay full and fair compensation for your injuries. Frankly, some cases are not economically feasible to try due to the cost of litigation. We try to limit our practice to only representing victims of sexual abuse, serious personal injury, and wrongful death claims so that most cases can be tried if not settled. Your attorney’s job is to recommend the best course of action possible given the circumstances of your case–then pursue that course to a favorable conclusion through trial or settlement.

What happens in a lawsuit?

A lot, most of which you will not experience unless you want to. Typically, your direct involvement in the legal process happens during discovery when you answer written questions (called interrogatories) and respond to requests for production of documents and other things. Next, you may be called upon to give your deposition to the opposing counsel in the presence of your attorney, which involves a face-to-face question and answer session on the record. Finally, there is trial during which you will have to explain what happened and present your claim for damages. Most other pre-trial matters can be handled by your attorney. Your attorney should maintain an open line of contact with you to discuss various matters from factual information to ongoing settlement and trial strategy. However, your level of participation, beyond answering discovery requests, participating in your deposition, and potentially mediation, is entirely up to you.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE TIMELINE OF A LAWSUIT

What happens if the case is lost in court?

Again, “loss” is a relative term in that some cases are lost because the amount recovered is inadequate compensation for your damages or may be less that was offered by way of settlement prior to trial. However, in a situation where the case is a total loss in that the jury does not find anyone else at fault then you make no recovery. If you have a contingent fee agreement with your law firm and any costs advanced were to be repaid only if you win, then you owe the law firm nothing. However, one of the risks of trial is the assessment of “court costs” to the losing party. Court costs include certain costs of trying the case such as the jurors’ daily fees, the costs of subpoenaing witnesses to testify and the expense of depositions which may be used at trial, as well as a limited number of other items. While the other side will sometimes waive recovering these costs if you do not prevail, in particular if you agree not to appeal the trial court judgment, there is no guarantee. Of course, if you have a solid basis for an appeal, you may not want to exchange that right for a waiver of court costs.

Will I have to go to court?

If your case is tried you will have to testify to explain the accident and how it has affected you and your family. Otherwise, you will probably never have to “go to court” as most court matters are handled by your attorney. You can always settle your case if you do not want to appear at trial, but you should never settle a case merely because of fear of “going to court”. Your attorneys will help you prepare for any court appearances or other aspects of your case in which you may be involved and will be there to help you through them. Typically, your only involvement in the lawsuit prior to trial will be to answer some written questions, provide relevant documents, give your deposition if requested and otherwise consult with counsel. Our goal is to make the litigation process as easy on our clients as possible so that they can make a rational decision about whether to settle their case or try it, rather than one made solely out of fear.

What kind of injuries and damages can I recover for?

You can recover for any injuries or damages that were caused or contributed to by the fault of another, whether they can be reduced to a specific dollar amount such as medical bills or lost income or involve non-economic damages sometimes referred to as pain and suffering. Typical economic damages in a personal injury case include medical and related health care costs as well as any lost wages, salary or other income. Non-economic damages are much broader but more difficult to quantify because they include such things as the pain you have suffered; the inability to do things you did before your accident; scarring or disfigurement; mental or emotional distress; and the consequences experienced by your spouse and sometimes your family. All of these damages have both a past and future component. Past economic damages can be proved by actual bills or tax returns. Future damages are usually estimated based on past experience, sometimes using an expert economist or doctor.

LEARN MORE ABOUT WHAT IS CONSIDERED DAMAGES

How much is my case worth?

That depends entirely on the facts–both liability (fault) and injuries (damages). But ultimately your case is worth exactly as much as the jury says it is worth, no more and no less. Settlements occur when the parties’ opinions about the potential jury verdict are close enough that they realize that trial would be a waste of time, effort, and money for all concerned. The only way to evaluate a case to determine what it may be worth is to fully investigate the cause, develop the damages, research the law, and evaluate a number of other factors from the parties’ background and the attorneys’ experience to the county in which the case will be filed and the judge who will try it. While there are broad ranges of values depending upon the clarity of liability and the nature and extent of the damages, there are no books, databases, or other tools that place a specific value on each case. The variables are too many and too complex. Rather, cases are evaluated and valued by your attorney after they have collected all the necessary information and filtered it through their years of experience.

How long will it take to complete my case?

Here the answer is the same–that depends on the circumstances of your case and what you decide to do with it. There is simply no way to predict at the outset exactly how long a case will take other than to estimate average time lengths for settlement and trial. Since it takes several months to investigate and evaluate a case and several more months for the other side to do the same after an offer is made, most settlements take at least four to six months. Trial on the other hand requires a lot more time and effort to steer your case through the legal system and consequently the earliest a personal injury case can be tried is usually a year from the date work began and often longer. If the case is appealed, add another year on to the process and any retrial takes even longer. Settlement is faster than trial but there is no guarantee that settlement will occur. Whereas, if you try the case you will get a judgment, one way or another. Settlement and trial are not mutually exclusive in that many lawsuits are filed but settled before they are tried. Sometimes it is beneficial to file a case before you see if it can be settled. Other times it is a better idea to try to settle a case before you incur the costs of litigation. Only after we have fully investigated your case can we make recommendations on how to proceed and give you any idea of the time frame for completion.

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What Our Clients Say About Us

No one should fight for their rightful recovery and justice alone.

Contact us today to discuss your case.

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No one should fight for their rightful recovery and justice alone.

Contact us today to discuss your case.

Contact Us - Sexual Abuse Page
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