Car Accident Injury Lawsuits: When Not to Sue

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If you work in a profession where you have to pay for insurance that covers you if you are named as a defendant in a lawsuit, you might grumble that there are too many lawsuits.  If you are involved in an accident that leaves you with long-lasting and costly injuries, though, you may easily think that whoever is responsible for causing your injuries can and should pay for your treatment and lost income. 

The truth is somewhere in between. In certain circumstances, a car accident injury lawsuit is the appropriate remedy for the financial losses resulting from the plaintiff’s injuries, but lawsuits are not a catch-all solution. The best way to find out if filing a lawsuit is a worthwhile use of your resources is to consult a St. Louis car accident lawyer.


The Ideal Circumstances for a Car Accident Injury Lawsuit

The purpose of a personal injury lawsuit is to reimburse and otherwise compensate an injured plaintiff for financial expenses and other hardships that resulted from an accident that it was the defendant’s responsibility to prevent.  In other words, negligence (a legal term for carelessness) is a requirement for a lawsuit. Negligence could take the form of driving in such a manner as to cause a car accident (such as rear-ending the car in front of you or making an illegal turn, for example). 

‘If the car belonged to a company, and the driver at fault for the accident was simply an employee of the company, then the person to name as a defendant is the company that owns the car; they are legally responsible for their vehicles. If the cause of the accident was insufficient road signs, such that neither driver can be considered at fault, then the appropriate defendant is the city or county responsible for the road where the accident took place.

Car accident lawsuits are not about being right or about assigning blame; they are about recovering compensation for medical expenses and lost income.  Therefore, it is pointless to sue someone for hundreds of thousands of dollars when the defendant has only modest assets. Large settlement amounts usually result from lawsuits where the defendant has ample resources; often, the defendant in these lawsuits is a corporation or government. 

Most working people, even those who make a decent living, have savings in the bank, and own a house or other valuable property, cannot afford to pay a huge lawsuit settlement.


Alternatives to Lawsuits

Most people injured in car accidents do not resort to lawsuits; they simply accept the settlements offered to them by their own insurance company or by the other driver’s insurance company.  If the driver who caused your accident did not have car insurance, your own insurance company might still offer you a settlement.  This is called uninsured motorist insurance coverage. Once you sign to accept the settlement, you cannot change your mind and sue.  Therefore, it is a good idea to consult a lawyer before you sign.


Contact Walton Telken Injury Attorneys About Car Accident Cases

Contact Walton Telken Injury Attorneys in the St. Louis, Missouri area for a legal consultation to decide whether to pursue a car accident lawsuit.

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