Should I Settle or Go to Trial in Florida?
This is the million-dollar question, should I settle or go to trial in Florida? Statistically 95-97% of all civil cases in Florida settle prior to trial. This is also a prevalent phenomenon in criminal law cases where plea agreements are reached instead of proceeding to trial. One reason we can attribute this phenomenon to is hiring an attorney to litigate your case or to defend you in litigation can be expensive. The deeper you go into the case, the greater the likelihood of attorney’s fees going past your preferred budgetary constraints, and the risk of having to pay the other party’s attorney’s fees may be. Another reason is often, during the discovery process, facts are uncovered that cloud the outcome of a potential civil trial. Both sides may come across as having contributed to the break down of relations, and this may make arriving at a decision for the judge or jury particularly difficult. Moreover, the litany of documents that may have to be produced, the number of depositions that may need to be taken, and the number of hours of work for which you may have to pay your attorney, mediators, court reporters, and investigators for can be daunting. I will raise you my original question should I settle or go to trial in Florida and ask a follow-up question that may better clarify the answer: Why are most civil cases settled before they go to trial?
Why Are Most Civil Cases Settled Before They Go to Trial?
One major reason why civil cases often settle before they go to trial is the parties become aware of the facts and they tend to favor one side, the plaintiff or the defendant. In order to minimize an award of damages at trial, and to avoid accruing additional lawyer fees, the parties often settle. From the other perspective, the plaintiff often believes their case is not ironclad and arriving at a settlement assures some payment of money in damages as opposed to taking the risk of not being paid anything, and losing attorney’s fees, filing fees, and other associated court costs.
Why are most civil cases settled before they go to trial? The litigation process brings ups and downs, twists and turns, high points and low points for each side. Sometimes litigation becomes a game of who blinks first. This is a form of legal dispute brinkmanship. To mitigate the risk of each party, a settlement is often reached that is good for both parties in a sense. The minimization of risk cannot be overstated as a motivating factor when considering should I settle or go trial in Florida.