Should you Settle your Personal Injury Case?


The answer to this question is not an easy one to give. Some cases have clear liability such as a drunk driver running a stop sign. Others have clear evidence of injury such as broken bones. Some cases have contested liability and some injuries are disputed based on pre-existing similar health issues. Either way, for the injured claimant, the key to achieving justice is to have experienced counsel. If liability can be proven and damages demonstrated to flow from the negligent acts involved, the case should only be settled if a fair offer of settlement is made. If not, the case should be presented to a jury by a good Trial Lawyer. If liability is contested and damages difficult to prove, sometimes such a case has to be tried as well–particularly if the parties cannot reach a compromise on the value of the claim.

Man with injured neckThe facts drive a case but facts have to be established. Using depositions and discovery wisely and strategically can enhance the settlement value of a good case and sometimes turn a contested case into a strong one. The more experience counsel has, the more likely it is that facts can be marshaled to maximize the settlement value of any case.

The ultimate answer to the question posed therefore rests with the advice of experienced and competent counsel. Liability and damages can be assessed by experienced counsel who can then advise the client on what would constitute a fair settlement value for their case. If a fair offer is made the case can be settled, but if a low offer is made, the case should probably should be presented to a jury absent financial or other countervailing reasons.

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About Steve Wisebram

At Finch McCranie, LLP, Steven R. Wisebram focuses his practice of law on serious personal injury cases and business litigation. Over the last 35 years, he has amassed significant civil and criminal trial experience during his career, which provides his clients a distinct advantage in both the courtroom and in negotiations. Beginning in 2005, Mr. Wisebram has been selected to Georgia’s Super Lawyers list.

Before becoming a partner with Finch McCranie, LLP, Mr. Wisebram served in several attorney positions with the federal government. He began his legal career in 1977 as legal counsel to a Congressional Committee on Standards of Official Conduct. In 1980 he served as an Assistant United States Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia for almost seven years. For the last three years of that position, he also served on the United States Department of Justice’s Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force.

Mr. Wisebram is licensed in the District of Columbia and the state of Georgia. He is admitted to practice before the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and the Eleventh Circuit.

He is a graduate of Harvard University and Emory Law School.