If a personal injury case must be litigated due to the negligent party’s insurance company's failure to offer fair and reasonable compensation, then the costs are usually much more than if it was settled pre-litigation.
In addition to the medial records fees already incurred, there are court costs incurred. For example, it costs about $400 to file and serve a lawsuit.
Other charges which come into play once a case goes to litigation include deposition costs, mediation costs, the cost to hire an expert, etc.
Each deposition generally costs at least $400. If the deposition is videotaped, then there is an additional cost for that service. Oftentimes the insurance company lawyer subpoenas the injury victim's medical records from many medical providers (some not even in relation to the current treatment related to the lawsuit). The medical records service charges for copies of those records.
Another common cost for lawsuits is the mediation fee. This is the charge of the mediator. Click here for an explanation of the mediation process in Texas).
There are also medical expert fees, which can be the highest portion of the litigation expense. These expenses are crucial to the success of many personal injury lawsuits. Sometimes an expert is needed to explain a disputed fact. Sometimes one is needed to controvert an expert hired by the insurance company. If the deposition of the expert is taken, that depo can be shown at trial to the jury, if the case does not settle ahead of time. But videotaped depositions are sometimes not as effective as live testimony. If the case needs live testimony from the expert, then the costs of bringing the expert live to trial increases substantially.
The more serious the injury or the more complex the case, the higher the chance that experts are needed. For instance, the routine car accident case is going to have less need for expert testimony than a products liability case that resulted in permanent and serious injury.
Is litigation really worth it?
It can be difficult to properly balance expenses when you take a claim to litigation. It is up to the attorney to determine how much to spend on each case. You need spend enough to make the claim successful, but not spend so much that the expenses are disproportionate to the value of the particular case.
At the Anderson Law Firm, we do our best to resolve each claim without having to take it to litigation. However, it is often the only way to make sure our clients get the full and fair compensation they are entitled to. Our attorneys are experienced at trial, and we have no reservations about going to trial for you if we believe it is the best thing to do.
If you hire us and we eventually decide that we believe it is in your best interest to take your case to litigation, we will talk with you to explain why we think that, and make sure that you are fully aware of what the litigation process involves. Ultimately, it is your decision whether or not we pursue litigation or accept whatever the insurance company has offered at that point.
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