Pursuing legal action can be a daunting process for many people. Lawsuits are complicated by rules and regulations and can bear heavy emotional and financial burdens to all parties involved. When the word lawsuit comes up, we know that it often conjures images of somber judges, large courtrooms, and suited lawyers. If you don’t have prior experience with filing a lawsuit, you probably don’t realize what you are getting into when you decide to proceed. Just remember, many common courtroom fears may be misplaced, and at Jeff GOULD Law, we are the attorney in your corner. If you’ve been injured and are considering hiring a lawyer, here are five things you may not know concerning filing a lawsuit.
There Are Time Limits
In Arizona, the statute of limitations is set at two years for all personal injury claims. For libel or slander claims, a subset of personal injury law, the time for filing suit is set at one year. Once a suit is filed, proper notification must be served on all parties involved. However, it is important to note that there are different rules and timelines if a government agency will be involved. Experienced legal counsel is essential to preserve your right to file a lawsuit and ensure all requirements and timelines are met. Failure to properly meet deadlines can result in the court dismissing your lawsuit.
Bigger is Not Always Better
If you have a television, chances are you have seen the commercials touting firms with hundreds of attorneys asserting they have settled cases for millions. It sounds impressive, but oftentimes the attorney you retain won’t be the same attorney who handles your case. Or you could find yourself dealing with multiple attorneys and paralegals. What’s more, your attorney may not be local, and you could be represented by an attorney from another city or state. There is a reason local is better. A local personal injury attorney like Jeff Gould knows the people, the system, and the Judges if a trial becomes necessary. Lastly, if this firm boasts multi-million-dollar cases, will they dedicate as much time to you if your case is not as impressive?
You May Never See a Judge or Courtroom
Going to trial is an expensive and time-consuming process. Since litigation is costly to all parties involved, it is generally in the best interests of all involved to reach an agreement outside of court. The majority of legal disputes never go to trial. That does not mean your lawyer’s skills don’t matter; in fact, it is quite the opposite. The better your attorney’s reputation is for winning at trial, the more likely your opponents will take your case seriously and negotiate in order to avoid paying even more through a trial verdict.
Consider What the Defendant Might Do
It’s important to consider how the defendant may respond if you file a lawsuit against them. For instance, when you pursue legal action against someone, they may, in turn, counter sue you, or file a counterclaim. Litigation is a complex process and can be unpredictable at times. Unless you know the person on the other side of your lawsuit well, prepare for the unexpected.
You are Generally Battling an Insurance Company
Accidents and injuries often involve regular people or small businesses. Oftentimes they may be friends or neighbors, and we may hesitate to pursue legal action because we don’t want to anger them. But that person, business, or organization won’t necessarily be the one responsible for paying for your injury. Individuals and companies pay monthly premiums for insurance coverage against accidents, injury, and property loss. Insurance is big business, and they are in the business of making money, not helping people. When faced with a potentially large payout, insurance companies will resist payment, and that is who you are ultimately battling. Not the store owner or individual.
Consider All The Facts Before Filing a Lawsuit
Personal injury attorneys help victims of property damage, injury accidents, and wrongful death and hold at-fault parties accountable and recover damages. While the process is complex, an experienced lawyer like Jeff Gould can navigate your case’s intricacies and work to recover maximum compensation on your behalf. Although there’s always at least one advantage to filing a lawsuit, by now, you must realize there may be disadvantages as well. Talk to an attorney about your case and seek legal guidance before committing to pursuing litigation. If you or a loved one has suffered due to someone else’s negligence, contact our office today for a complete review of your case.