What Is the Difference Between an Injury Claim and an Injury Lawsuit?

If you’ve been injured in New York City due to someone else’s negligence, you may be unsure whether to file a personal injury claim vs. lawsuit. While both options allow you to seek compensation for your damages, there are essential differences between the insurance claims process and a full-fledged personal injury lawsuit.

The attorneys at our full-service personal injury law firm are real New Yorkers dedicated to helping injury victims understand and exercise their rights. Our experienced legal team will guide you through every step of your case and fight aggressively for the full and fair compensation you deserve.

KEY TAKEAWAYS
  • A personal injury insurance injury claim involves negotiating a settlement with insurance companies, whereas a judge or jury will decide how to resolve personal injury lawsuits filed in court.
  • Insurance claims are generally settled faster than lawsuits, which can take months or years to resolve.
  • Insurance claims cost less to resolve, whereas personal injury lawsuits involve a more extensive investment of resources and time, which can raise the cost.
  • By far, most personal injury cases are resolved in out-of-court settlement negotiations.
  • Whether negotiating a settlement or litigating in court, personal injury victims benefit from having a skilled attorney in their corner who can protect their right to compensation.

What Is a Personal Injury Insurance Claim?

A personal injury insurance claim is a formal demand for compensation from the at-fault party’s insurance company. Depending on the circumstances of your accident, you can file a claim under your own no-fault insurance or the at-fault party’s liability insurance. Either way, the amount of compensation you receive in a settlement will be capped by the coverage limits in the underlying policy.

What Is a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

A personal injury lawsuit is a legal action filed in civil court against the party responsible for your damages. Though it is beneficial to have an experienced personal injury attorney negotiate an insurance claim settlement on your behalf, it is even more important to let an attorney handle your personal injury lawsuit.

All personal injury cases go through a “discovery” phase, during which both sides exchange evidence and information. Settlement negotiations may continue throughout the litigation process, but if no agreement is reached, your case will advance to trial. A judge or jury will then hear arguments from both sides before deciding on a verdict and awarding damages.

What Is the Difference Between a Claim and a Lawsuit?

Resolving your personal injury lawsuit through an insurance settlement is much more affordable than a full-fledged lawsuit. By contrast, handling a personal injury claim through in-court litigation requires extensive preparation to ensure you bring the strongest case possible at trial, which significantly raises the cost.

On the other hand, the amount of compensation you can receive through a well-prepared personal injury lawsuit can be significantly higher than what you might achieve through settlement. This is because settlements are capped by the underlying insurance policy’s coverage limits.

If your case goes to trial, a court might decide that your claim is worth more and hand down a verdict accordingly. However, suing for more than the policy limits is an uphill battle without the help of an experienced attorney. Even so, the at-fault party will consider the risk of having to pay more in court as they attempt to negotiate a settlement.

Though settlement negotiations may continue until the day of trial, most cases are settled before a verdict is handed down. Some sources estimate that 95 percent of cases are settled. Even so, the threat of a lawsuit is your biggest bargaining chip in out-of-court settlement talks.

Contact Chopra & Nocerino To Learn More

Our knowledgeable attorneys can evaluate your case and determine whether a personal injury claim vs. lawsuit is the best path forward. In all cases, however, you will need to file your lawsuit before the New York statute of limitations passes. Missing the deadline will destroy your right to seek compensation in court. If the at-fault party realizes that you can no longer sue, it will also undermine your bargaining power in settlement talks.

We are here to ensure you understand your rights and fight for the justice, accountability, and compensation you deserve. To learn more, read our Personal Injury FAQs.

If you’ve been injured in an accident in New York, do not hesitate to reach out to Chopra & Nocerino. Call (855) NYC-HURT or fill in our contact form to schedule your free consultation with our skilled personal injury attorneys. Para servir mejor a todos los miembros de nuestra comunidad, ofrecemos servicios en español.

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