Some auto accident injury claims in Ohio are relatively simple matters that are handled through the insurance system with no problem. Injured parties submit their claims that are paid in a settlement. However, there are also many claims that insurance companies deny, which then leads to litigation in many situations. This happens for a variety of reasons, but most of them are regarding issues of fault and negligence among the involved drivers or disagreement on the necessary amount of damages.
Initial case negotiations
Motor vehicle accidents where one particular driver is largely at fault for the mishap are typically settled well before a claim makes it to court. Taking a case to a trial can be very expensive, which encourages insurance providers to offer settlements that injured parties must decide whether or not to accept. This process is actually one of give-and-take in many situations with injured parties making counter offers as well regarding their concept of reasonable damages. These negotiations commonly break down over the issue of general damages for ongoing impact based on the extent of injury, which then results in the injured party filing a lawsuit.
Upon filing an auto accident lawsuit, cases are scheduled for an initial hearing where all evidence is submitted and discussed in open court. Using the official accident report provided by law enforcement, the court then presents a general position regarding level of fault for each driver and whether the case should be scheduled for a trial. The period between the initial hearing and trial allows legal counselors for both sides another opportunity to discuss the case regarding a reasonable settlement based on the material evidence.
All injured drivers in Ohio should remember that the state uses a modified comparative negligence law that bars drivers from financial recovery if they are more than 50% at fault for a mishap. Damages are then paid by discounting the total amount of damages by the driver’s comparative fault percentage if they are eligible for financial recovery.