Q: I had a client ask me the other day, “Do we really need to File a Lawsuit and go to Trial?”
A: My response was a no, we don’t have to file a Lawsuit you can actually Settle but you’re likely to get less than 50 cents on the dollar, its really up to you. Our Law Firm is a Trial Firm that means that we prepare our cases as though we are going to Trial. Very few cases actually go to a Jury Trial. It’s probably less than 1%. Now what does all that mean? Well it means that when you’re selecting an Attorney you make the choice, do you have serious injuries (i.e. broken bones, fractures, scaring, etc.) from the accident. If you want to settle the case, which means negotiating a settlement, you’re shooting yourself in the foot. You need your Attorney to play hardball and actually come out ahead of the Insurance Company.
After we have discussed the pros and cons of filing a Lawsuit and Litigating the case usually all of our clients do want to move forward against the Defendant and capture the true value of their case. Don’t forget we’re up against a big Insurance Company that plays this game everyday, thousands of times. Our challenge as Trial Lawyers is to educate our clients to the process. It’s a dance that we engage in and as in anything else if you’re going to do it right and be successful pick your partner wisely, if don’t do it right you lose.
Today clients have the benefit of the Mediation process which in recent years has been incredibly beneficial to our clients. The Mediator, often times a Judge but sometimes an experienced Lawyer, is very helpful in explaining how the process works the client has an opportunity to understand the plusses and minuses of the case. NELSON AND NATALEprefers bring our clients through the process. That’s a way of educating clients on the strength of their case and giving them an opportunity to share in the decision as to whether to settle the case through Mediation or to move forward to Trial. Mediations usually last for three or four hours and as in every case we prepare a Mediation Brief, sit down with a client and explain what’s in the Brief and to discuss in general what to expect at the Mediation. The benefits of course are that we don’t have to put on the stand expensive Experts and we avoid the costs of bringing in Doctors and other parties to testify at Trial. Mediations are very informal, there is no Cross-Examination of the clients there isn’t any stress. Again every client should look for a Law Firm that engages in this process. Hopefully, a Law Firm like NELSON AND NATALE, has the skill, reputations and experience to take these cases to Trial. As a client you want the Insurance Company to recognize the strength of your case and of course because of the reputation of NELSON AND NATALE transfer the respect that they have for the “Firm” to the client. It’s too obvious but the client’s selection of the Law Firm is critical since it notifies the Insurance Company as to how strong and tough that Law Firm is going to be in the case. For example, our moderately sized “Firm” has been around for some 30 years, every Insurance Company knows of us and believe me they respect us. “YOU CAN ONLY BE A WINNER BY CHOOSING A WINNER.”