Lawsuit Vs. Settlement – What Is the Difference?
Lawsuits and settlements have a great deal in common. A lawsuit is a form of settlement, but not every settlement is necessarily a lawsuit. The terms seem to be interchangeable, but there is a difference between the two legal processes.
What Is a Settlement?
A settlement refers to resolving or terminating a disagreement or dispute without going to court, often between two parties. It may be mutual or unilateral, usually requires a written agreement, and may involve some compensation monetary or otherwise.
But it does not always involve a lawsuit. It can also refer to the outcome of a lawsuit regarding the amount settled for, if anything, damages.
What Is a Lawsuit?
Lawsuits are disputes in which one party sues another for an alleged violation of a legal right. It is usually for monetary or other damages. A lawsuit is instituted by filing a complaint with the court or serving the defendant with summons and complaints.
The plaintiff, in this case, is the party that files the complaint while the defendant is the sued party.
A governmental agency can administratively initiate a lawsuit without any involvement of private parties to enforce specific laws or regulations.
What Are the Differences Between Settlement and Lawsuit?
Settlement usually requires mutual agreement where each party gives up something to resolve the conflict. On the other hand, a lawsuit starts with one party suing another for violating a legal right.
The word “Settlement” best describes a negotiated agreement between the parties in a dispute. But, a lawsuit is an action filed by one party against another party, and it can be either civil or criminal.
They are not binding unless the court approves them, but the court must authorize lawsuits before proceeding.
Civil lawsuits typically involve disputes over money issues such as contract disputes or personal injury claims. Criminal cases usually entail crimes committed against society, such as theft, assault, murder, etc. These types of cases will result in punishment if found guilty.
Settlement agreements sometimes include monetary damages for injuries suffered, while lawsuits do not always require compensation for damages.
Lawsuit Vs. Settlement – What Should I Choose?
Now that you know what a lawsuit and settlement are, you may wonder what to opt for if you get involved in an accident. You have to decide based on what you want to do and if someone is at fault.
For personal injury cases, the plaintiff can claim compensation for negligence caused by another party. You can opt for a settlement if you feel you and the other party can reach a mutual understanding without going to court.
However, if the other party is in denial but you know they are at fault, you can sue them and file a lawsuit.
Your personal injury lawyer in Glendale is the better person to help you decide. They know your rights and the compensation you stand to receive.
It’s best to speak to them as soon as possible after the accident. This is when all evidence remains fresh, and memories are clear and accurate. And it helps build a strong case later on down the road.
Avoid speaking to insurance companies without a Glendale personal injury attorney around. Insurance companies offer the lowest compensation possible to help save their money. Your attorney can help maximize your rightfully desired compensation.
They can also assist with preparing a statement about the accident and make suggestions to keep you safe during investigations.
In short, the victim has a right to sue when negotiations fail to bring all parties together through a settlement. And it’s your lawyer who helps you through the process. They know the laws best and will help maximize your rightfully deserved compensation.