I’ve come to understand many people mistakenly believe if they’ve been injured in an accident in Florida it means their case involves a lawsuit. So let’s look at what it means to have a lawsuit and when someone’s accident injury case might involve filing suit.
What is a Lawsuit?
Keep in mind, a lawsuit officially means when someone sues another party. In a car accident, for instance, if you are rear-ended and suffer a serious injury, a lawsuit would typically mean you would sue the other driver. To sue someone requires your lawyer to draft a written complaint. The complaint describes what the other driver did that was negligent and what injuries and financial recovery you are seeking. The complaint is filed with the clerk of court. The clerk charges a filing fee of about $400. The court then requires the other person to file their answer to your charges.
This is the beginning of the legal process which would involve:
- answering questions under oath,
- having sworn depositions of witnesses,
- attending mediation and
- setting your case for trial.
Most injury cases are settled informally in private negotiations between your lawyer and the other person’s insurance company. This is because most clients do not want to sue anyone or have their case become a lawsuit.\
When Should a Florida Lawsuit be Filed?
Lawsuits require more time to settle, they cost more money and they require much more of the client’s time and energy. It often makes financial sense to file a lawsuit if a case can’t be settled for what it is worth, but not in every case. At Jim Dodson Law, we always let clients know when we believe a lawsuit is in their best interest.