A person who is injured in an accident caused by a negligent truck driver could be entitled to compensation. In many cases, victims will file a civil lawsuit as a way to pursue that money. However, it is possible that a case will be resolved without the need to go to court or without the need for a judge or jury to rule if a trial begins.
Cases can instead be resolved through arbitration, mediation or negotiation. Any ruling that is reached through arbitration is generally binding on all parties. An injured victim could benefit from trying to settle as it can be faster and less expensive to do so. This is because the parties are generally willing to negotiate in good faith as there is no need for anyone to admit guilt. However, it is possible that an injured victim will receive less in a settlement than by going through a formal trial.
Once a settlement is reached, a victim generally gives up his or her right to pursue future compensation. A settlement can either be paid as a lump sum or as a structured settlement. Structured settlements are paid out over time while the lump sum payment is received all at once. The tax treatment and other variables could influence how a person chooses to receive his or her settlement money.
The damages may include medical expenses, lost wages and lost future earnings. An attorney may review the case to determine what types of compensation a victim could receive in a given case.