Filing a lawsuit for a maritime injury falls under the protection of the Jones Act. If you got injured, you’re entitled under the act to file a claim for any damages that have resulted from your injuries. Most cases will settle without a trial, but there are those rare times where a trial becomes necessary.
Fighting a case in court can be highly challenging. Although you can represent yourself, if you don’t have any prior legal experience, this isn’t a good idea. You should always consult with a lawyer first before making any negotiations regarding your claim.
Do I Have to Go to Court to Prove Fault?
There are a few laws that protect maritime workers, including the Jones Act, which requires that you establish and prove the fault of your employer that caused your damages. This way, you can hold them liable for the costs, and you can receive a settlement for them.
However, proving fault doesn’t have to go through court. The experienced offshore injury lawyers at Morris Bart can help you prove fault during the negotiations process. This way, you can get your settlement fast rather than waiting months on end at a trial.
For a free legal consultation, call 800-537-8185
How Likely Is It for My Lawsuit to Go to Trial?
Realistically, it’s not likely for your lawsuit to go to trial. The reason is mainly due to how courts work. The vast majority of civil cases get resolved out of court through careful negotiation. There are a few times a case will go to court, but these are the exception, not the rule. Most of the time, cases go to court if neither party can reach a settlement.
Courts are constantly bogged down with cases no matter the time of year. Because of the long wait times, it can get expensive on both sides to settle a lawsuit through court. This is why no one wants to go to court unless it’s absolutely necessary.
How Settlements Work Out of Court
When you file a claim and try to settle out of court, you’ll primarily deal with your employer and the insurance company that pays out the settlement. In a perfect world, both of them would give you a settlement that reflects the value of your damages, but this is seldom the case.
If you don’t have legal representation, the insurance company might try to pressure you into accepting a settlement amount lower than what you truly deserve. They do this by dragging out the negotiations process and trying to convince you to forgo hiring a lawyer. Additionally, they may also try to get you to incriminate yourself and blame your injuries on you.
Instead of letting your employer and their insurance company undermine your injuries, a lawyer will help you fight back. In many cases, just hiring a lawyer is enough to get the insurance companies to finally listen to your demands. Because they want to avoid a costly trial, they’ll work with your lawyer to provide a fair and appropriate settlement.
Hiring a Lawyer Doesn’t Mean Going to Court
Many people wrongly believe that the moment you hire a lawyer to help you, they’re going to push you to go to trial. This is simply not true. Most lawyers will try to get you the best settlement possible as fast as possible. Going to court is counterintuitive to those goals.
There are many benefits to hiring a lawyer to help you with your maritime injury case. An offshore injury attorney:
- Will help you gather evidence for your claim
- Will help you understand maritime law and how it applies to your case
- Can represent you on your behalf and go to trial only if it’s necessary
- Can answer all of your legal questions and provide legal advice on your lawsuit
- Will ensure that you meet all your deadlines and that all your paperwork gets accurately filed
You’re more likely to get a fair settlement with a strong attorney by your side. Don’t underestimate how important it is to get a lawyer to help you during this process. While you recover and heal from your injuries, a lawyer will handle all of your legal work and help you get compensated for your damages.
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Are Damages Different if I Settle Out of Court?
Your damages won’t be different whether you settle in or out of court. It doesn’t matter how you choose to settle your lawsuit. Your damages will remain the same, and nothing will get altered. You can get compensated for various damages related to your maritime injury, such as:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Lost wages
- Medical expenses
As long as you can prove negligence and that your injuries resulted in these damages, you should have no issue getting compensated for them either in court or out of it.
Speak With an Offshore Injury Lawyer Today
To learn more about the specifics of your maritime injury lawsuit, you should talk to an experienced offshore injury lawyer at Morris Bart. For a free consultation, please contact us today to set up an appointment.
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