Should I Take My Personal Injury Case to Trial or Settle?

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Each personal injury case is completely unique, so the answer will depend on your individual circumstances. After you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle crash that wasn’t your fault, you may start to worry about how daunting it would be to take your case to court, especially as you’re going through healing and recovery. However, you don’t necessarily need to take the case to trial to receive maximum compensation. 

With Sandene Law as your Denver personal injury attorney, we will provide you with personalized legal advice to determine which course of action would provide you with the best outcome–whether that be through a settlement or taking the case to trial. 

As you continue reading below, we’ll walk you through some of the considerations that can help you decide when a settlement or a trial might be best for your personal injury case. 

Is Settling Outside of the Courts Better?

You may think you have to take your case to trial in order to receive the compensation you deserve to cover vehicle damages, lost wages, medical expenses, and other economic damages. However, many skilled lawyers will be able to help their clients settle outside of the courts, receiving the compensation they deserve without having to undergo the stress of a trial. 

In many cases, lawyers will begin negotiations with the insurance adjuster after filing a personal injury claim to see if a fair settlement agreement can be met outside of the courts. This approach is successful in many cases and helps victims get the financial compensation they’re entitled to without having to step foot in a courtroom. 

So while not necessarily the “better” choice, settling outside of the courtroom is certainly a favorable approach for many lawyers and their clients. 

Pros and Cons of Settling

To give you a better idea of why settling is often the desirable choice for Denver personal injury lawyers and their clients, here is a quick look at the advantages and drawbacks of this approach.  


  • Settling a personal injury case outside of the courts often leads to a quicker resolution than taking it to trial
  • The details of such cases are often kept confidential and private when they are settled out of the courts
  • Settlement negotiations are more predictable and both parties have more control over the case than when it’s left to the jury or judge in a trial


  • Settling outside of the courts may lead to lower compensation values than what a jury or judge would award plaintiffs in certain cases
  • Victims may not get the sense of justice they’re looking for when their case is settled out of the courts

What is a Personal Injury Trial?

When a personal injury case goes to trial, the injured and at-fault parties will make arguments in front of a judge or jury to determine the liability in the case. This is done to see if the defendant should be held liable for the plaintiff’s damages. 

The decision of the jury or the judge will determine whether the defendant is liable, and the amount of damages that will be awarded to the plaintiff. 

Personal injury trials often take a few weeks or months depending on the nature of the incident, the number of witnesses each party calls upon, expert testimony, presenting of evidence, and jury deliberations. In addition, a court date isn’t set until a year or more after the personal injury lawsuit is filed initially. Plus, if the defendant appeals the decision after the trial, this could add even more months or years until the entire case is resolved. 

When Do Personal Injury Lawyers Push for Trial?

It’s true that many personal injury attorneys will go for the settlement first before taking the case to trial. However, there are certain situations where a jury trial is seen as the best option for getting a client the full compensation they deserve. 

At the Sandene Law firm, we are willing to file a lawsuit and represent clients in court when we believe it’s the necessary method to get them the compensation they’re entitled to. So, attorneys will often take a case to trial when they don’t believe their client is receiving a fair settlement offer from insurance companies through negotiations and believe they will make a compelling case in front of a judge or jury. 

Pros and Cons of Going to Trial

Just like with a personal injury settlement, there are a number of pros and cons of taking a personal injury case to trial that you should keep in mind. 


  • Jury verdicts are often greater than the personal injury settlement amount offered before the trial
  • Plaintiffs may feel like they are holding the at-fault party more accountable for their actions when presenting their case in front of a jury
  • The case is determined by a neutral third-party
  • Victims may be able to seek out punitive damages in certain circumstances


  • There is greater uncertainty with a trial, as there is no guarantee that the jury will side with the plaintiff’s argument
  • Trial litigation can be a lengthy process that lasts up to a few years until the case is fully resolved
  • There are higher legal fees and costs associated with taking a personal injury case to trial
  • Both plaintiffs and defendants lose a sense of confidentiality and privacy when the case goes to trial

Go to Trial or Settle? Contact Sandene Law Today for Personalized Advice

The choice between settling out of court or taking a personal injury case to trial is often a deliberate decision that car accident victims and their lawyers need to consider thoroughly. Each case is completely unique, so there is no direct answer as to whether a trial or settlement is better. 

If you’re not sure how to handle your personal injury claim after being injured in a car crash, your best bet at receiving maximum compensation – whether you go to trial or not – is hiring an experienced personal injury attorney like Sandene Law to represent you. 

We will thoroughly review the details of your case, and represent your best interests against the insurance giants so you can get the financial compensation you deserve. If we don’t believe you’re getting a fair settlement offer during negotiations, we are not afraid to take your case to the courts and make the case in front of a jury. 

We understand just how intimidating this process can be, so you don’t have to navigate the complexities of the legal system on your own. If you’re in Denver, Colorado, or the surrounding areas, reach out to Sandene Law today for a free consultation discussing your case – we’d love to hear from you.


How long does the typical negotiation process take before reaching a settlement outside of the courts?

The duration of the negotiation process for a settlement outside of the courts can vary widely depending on the complexity of the case, the cooperation of involved parties, and the willingness to compromise. Typically, it can take several weeks to months to reach a settlement agreement.

Are there specific factors that might indicate a case is more suitable for trial rather than settlement, regardless of the preferences of the plaintiff?

Several factors may indicate that a case is more suitable for trial rather than settlement. These factors might include the severity of the injuries, disputed liability, reluctance of the defendant to offer fair compensation, or if the plaintiff seeks punitive damages. Ultimately, the decision to pursue trial is based on the assessment of the attorney and the specific circumstances of the case.

Can plaintiffs appeal a settlement if they feel it’s unjust, or are settlements final once agreed upon?

Settlement agreements are typically legally binding contracts, and once accepted by both parties, they are final and cannot be appealed. However, exceptions may exist in cases of fraud, duress, or other legal grounds for challenging the validity of the settlement.

How do personal injury attorneys assess whether a settlement offer is fair or if it’s worth pursuing the case through trial?

Personal injury attorneys assess the fairness of a settlement offer by considering various factors such as the extent of the injuries, the costs of medical treatment, lost wages, pain and suffering, and potential future expenses. They also compare the offer to the potential outcomes of a trial, taking into account the strength of the case and the likelihood of success before a judge or jury.

Are there any statistics or data available that show the success rates of settlements versus trial outcomes in personal injury cases?

While there may be general trends, success rates of settlements versus trial outcomes can vary greatly depending on the specifics of each case, including jurisdiction, nature of the injuries, and the legal strategies employed. Attorneys may have anecdotal evidence based on their experiences, but there may not be comprehensive data available to provide a direct comparison of success rates.

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