Should You Accept a Lump Sum or Structured Settlement for Injury in Pennsylvania
Many plaintiffs might have an idea of how much they should be paid for their injuries. However, understanding how they should get paid is a different story.
Rather than take their case to a trial, injured plaintiffs might instead decide to accept a settlement agreement. Many such agreements may be paid as large, one-time lump sums or structured settlements that are paid over time. Both options have pros and cons, and you should discuss your situation with an attorney to figure out which option is best for you. Alternatively, settlements might not be what works best for your case, and our attorneys can help you pursue a full trial where you can recover the full value of your considerable damages.
Navigating the judicial process after an injury is difficult, and our Pennsylvania personal injury lawyers can help you negotiate a favorable settlement or take your case to court. Contact our attorneys at The Reiff Law Firm for a free case review to get started. Call our offices at (215) 709-6940.
Pros and Cons of Structured Settlements and Lump Sums in Pennsylvania Injury Cases
Accidents and injuries often leave people with painful physical injuries and high bills associated with those injuries. Many cases end in settlement agreements rather than trials in a courtroom, and not all settlements are the same. Lump sums and structured settlements can be helpful in different ways, but they might also have certain disadvantages. It is possible that a settlement is not the best option for you, and our Philadelphia personal injury attorneys can fight for you and your compensation through a full trial.
A lump sum settlement is a one-time payment for your injuries and damages., Generally, a lump sum is a fairly large amount of money that is paid all at once. This can be very helpful to plaintiffs with expenses and needs that need to be met immediately. A lump sum also provides plaintiffs with a large amount of liquid capital they can use to pay their expenses, bills, and cover other damages.
Another potential advantage to a lump sum settlement is that you can choose how to spend the money. Since lump sums are often large, many plaintiffs choose to pay off their immediate needs and invest the rest or use it constructively. In time, that lump sum might grow to something more substantial.
Lump sum settlements are not perfect, and there are some downsides you should be aware of. For example, lump sums are often smaller than the actual amount of money your case is worth. Many plaintiffs accept lump sums because it is all the defendant can afford to pay, and it is better to get some compensation instead of none.
In many cases, plaintiffs do not want a lump sum that fails to cover all their expenses. Our Delaware County personal injury attorneys can help you take your case to a trial and get the compensation that fully covers your damages.
Structured settlements are not paid out all at once. Instead, they are paid in regular installments over time until the entire balance of the settlement is eventually paid off. One of the biggest advantages of structured settlements is that they tend to be worth more money than lump sums once fully paid. Additionally, you can sell or transfer your rights to receive payments from a structured settlement. Plaintiffs sometimes sell their rights to receive these payments in exchange for a lump sum from a third party. Usually, this new lump sum is larger than one the plaintiff would get through a settlement.
The drawback to a structured settlement is that it might take a long time to pay out, depending on how large the overall settlement is. If you have needs or debts that have to be paid off right away, there might not be time to wait for enough money from your structured settlement.
Structured settlements and other kinds of settlements are usually the results of negotiations and compromise that reduce your overall compensation. Our West Chester personal injury lawyers can help you fight for compensation for the full extent of your damages in a trial in court.
Are Lump Sums or Structured Settlements Preferable to Trials in Pennsylvania Injury Cases?
While lump sum or structured settlements can help plaintiffs get money quickly, they are not always the best option. Often, the process of settlement negotiations leads to a reduction in your overall compensation. For example, your case might be worth $100,000, but through settlement negotiations, the defendant agrees to pay you only $75,000. While settlements do help you avoid a potentially lengthy trial, they are not always worth the tradeoff, especially if damages in your case are expected to be significant.
If you are unsure about accepting a settlement, take your case to trial instead. At trial, the full extent of your claimed damages is at stake. You might be awarded far more compensation if you win than if you settled with the defendant. If your case is worth $100,000, you deserve every penny. In cases where punitive damages are available, you could be awarded a very large sum of money. You should not walk away from all that compensation for a settlement before talking about it with our Pennsylvania personal injury attorneys first.
Success at a trial can also get you something a settlement cannot: vindication and justice. A jury verdict against the defendant and an official acknowledgment from the court that the defendant is in the wrong can help plaintiffs achieve closure and move on with their lives.
Call Our Pennsylvania Personal Injury Attorneys for Help
Lump sums and structured settlements can help you get some of your damages paid for, but taking your case to a trial might help you get the full value of the compensation you truly deserve. Call our Media personal injury lawyers for help now. Call The Reiff Law Firm for a free case review at (215) 709-6940.