When clients hire us for personal injury cases, they almost always think they are immediately in a lawsuit. But this is not true! It is almost always to a client’s advantage to attempt settlement with the insurance company before filing suit. Why?
- Attorney fees are cheaper! They remain at 33.33% prior to a lawsuit, but they will increase to 40% (and sometimes more) after a lawsuit is filed. This is true because more time and more work are required of the attorney after a lawsuit is filed.
- Attorney expenses are cheaper! Attorney expenses are separate and distinct from attorney fees. They include anything the attorney pays out-of-pocket to move a case forward, including but not limited to: copying expenses, technology expenses, postage expenses, and expenses to request medical records/bills. These expenses must be reimbursed at the time of settlement. Once a lawsuit is filed, there is automatically an added expense for the filing fee, which currently starts at $156.00. There are also additional expenses for things such as depositions, expert witnesses, and mediations, just to name a few. At the very minimum, expenses typically double or triple after a lawsuit is filed.
- The client does not have to do a lot! Prior to a lawsuit being filed, the attorney can do most of the legwork while the client focuses on simply getting better. After a lawsuit is filed, the client will likely have to take off a minimum of three to five days from work in order to: respond to discovery requests, such as interrogatories and requests for production; prepare for a deposition; give a deposition, and attend a mediation.
- The client gets paid sooner! Lawsuits can drag on. This is true because multiple peoples’ calendars have to line up in order to get things done, including the client’s calendar! Motions for extensions of time are often filed because attorney’s calendars are typically very full for at least several months in advance. You are usually looking at a minimum of at least one year before you see a settlement once a lawsuit is filed.
- The client experiences less stress! Most of our personal injury clients prefer to avoid the stress of filing a lawsuit because it requires having to relive the accident and injuries over and over again, which can be very traumatizing.
If you have been injured in an accident, contact Garrison Law Firm, and we will work hard to settle your claim with the insurance company directly so that you will experience the least amount of stress possible and reap the benefits of cheaper attorney fees, cheaper attorney expenses, and quicker settlements!