Understanding The Difference Between A Personal Injury Claim And A Lawsuit
It feels like many different things are occurring at once when you are hurt in an accident. Dealing with a personal injury can quickly feel like it’s too much, especially when someone else is to blame. One common question our firm at Beck Law gets asked when dealing with personal injury is, ‘Should I begin a claim or a lawsuit?” Although it is a common misunderstanding to mix up the two, they are very different. Knowing the distinction between a claim and a lawsuit will help you decide what to do next if you sustain a personal injury.
Personal Injury Coeur D’Alene
Let’s take a look at the difference between a personal injury claim and a lawsuit, starting with the legal definitions of each.
- Personal Injury Claim: a formal request for compensation such as requests for reimbursement after an accident or injury has been sustained.
- Personal Injury Lawsuit: legal actions when one party, the plaintiff, sues another party, the defendant, for compensation and it is resolved in court.
While some personal injury disputes are better resolved through the claims procedure, other personal injury cases call for civil legal action. Your choice to go with a personal injury claim versus a personal injury lawsuit may be influenced by any of the following:
- Amount of compensation you are requesting
- The extent of harm or damage done
- Length of time to recover
- Long-term effects of the injury or accident
- How much work you are willing to put into the process
If you want to go forward with a personal injury claim, you need to clearly understand the losses and injuries you sustained along with the total cost of everything to resolve it. Once the claim has been formally submitted, you wait for the offer to come back. The initial settlement offer you receive is typically lower than the amount requested. You can accept, reject, or counteroffer in response. Accepting the claim typically entails agreeing that you will not be eligible for any further compensation relating to the personal injury. You can then move forward with an acceptance or a counteroffer.
If an offer cannot come to an agreeable solution between the two parties, it may be time to launch a lawsuit. It is crucial to remember that only those who suffered severe injuries and subsequent losses as a result of a personal injury typically stand to gain from personal injury lawsuit cases. Because personal injury lawsuits take a long time to come to a conclusion, many people decide to just go through the claims process. However, some instances prove that a lawsuit is the only choice for proper compensation.
If you have suffered from a personal injury, have more questions about beginning a personal injury claim, need advice on further action to take in a current claim, or even need to take further action and initiate a lawsuit, give Beck Law a call today. Our team of experienced attorneys is ready and happy to help you in the best way possible.