Before this question is answered we must clarify one thing. When clients ask us this type of question, we usually need to get more specific about what “going to court” really means. When some people say “go to court” they mean whether or not they will actually need to go to the court and testify. Others use it to describe whether a lawsuit will need to be filed. Either way, the short answer to this frequently asked question is “No”. But, each accident case is different.
Most personal injury claims from motor vehicle accidents in Massachusetts are settled with the auto insurance company before you ever need to file a lawsuit or go to court. In other accidents, there may be issues that may result in the injured party needing to file a lawsuit and possibly go to court.
There are a number of different factors in each accident case that will determine whether you need to go to court or not. It is probably better explained by way of examples:
Example 1: We recently represented a young woman, who suffered a neck and back injury in a car crash in Medway, MA. This client was stopped at a red light and was rear-ended by another car. Our client suffered a bulged disc in her cervical spine (neck) and a herniated disc in her lumbar spine (lower back). Because liability was reasonably clear (i.e., the other driver was clearly at fault and his auto insurance company accepted that he was negligent) we were able to settle this personal injury claim without the need to file a lawsuit or ever go to court.
Example 2: In another case, however, our client was driving in Newton, MA and as he proceeded through an intersection, another car took a left hand turn directly in front of him. Our client ended up colliding with the other car and suffered a fractured arm in the accident. The other driver’s auto insurance company denied liability and argued that our client was at fault for causing the accident. In this situation, we needed to file a lawsuit against the other driver. Following the discovery process of a Massachusetts personal injury lawsuit, evidence was obtained that supported our client’s version of how the accident happened and we were able to settle the case before our client ever needed to go to court. So, in this example, we needed to file a lawsuit, but our client did not need to actually go to court to testify at a trial.
As you can see, there are different scenarios that will dictate whether you will need to go to court or not in order to resolve your personal injury claim. In order to be certain whether you will need to file a lawsuit or go to court, you should consult with an experienced Massachusetts accident attorney.
Speak With An Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer Today
If you have been hurt in an accident in Massachusetts and you are not sure whether you will need to go to court or not, you should consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer. This will get you answers to your questions, general information about accident cases and advice on the appropriate and necessary legal steps to take.
At Mahaney & Pappas, LLP, we offer complementary initial meetings where we will review your case, answer your questions, and explain your rights and legal options. To speak with someone on our legal team or to schedule your meeting, please call (508) 879-3500 or contact us online.