For consideration of your case, a settlement is a final resolution where both sides agree on an amount that the case will resolve for based on an evaluation of the strengths and weaknesses of both sides. It helps to have a trial lawyer giving you advice on the benefits and risks of moving forward through a trial on your case. Sometimes, the defense leaves you no choice but to go to trial because their offer is so low. Other times, the opportunity for closure and a resolution outweighs the risks of the trial, which weighs in favor of accepting a settlement offer. Since every case is different, individual cases must be analyzed on their own merit. Additionally, a case that once looked like it needed to be settled may evolve into a great case that ultimately needs to be tried to a verdict. Or a case that once looked like a slam-dunk may need to be settled because flaws later appeared. This analysis is a constantly evolving process that never stops until the case is over.
A settlement can take place before or after the lawsuit is filed. A settlement typically occurs at mediation. Mediation usually occurs after depositions of the important witnesses are taken and just before trial. A settlement can even take place once the actual trial has started.
A verdict on the other hand is where the jury makes the decision on the case. They have a list of questions to answer, which is called the jury charge. The jury charge is the law for that particular case and is read by the Judge. Then, the jury goes back to deliberate after hearing all the testimony and seeing all the evidence. When they deliberate, the jury decides the answers to the questions of law resulting in a verdict.
Do you want to learn the process of a personal injury case? Order my FREE book called The Essential Guide For Your Texas Injury Case. It will walk you through the steps as well as outline how we handle cases at The Button Law Firm. If you have any questions about your Dallas, Midland or Houston personal injury case, reach out to us. We are here to help you stay informed and get closure.