There are a lot of law firms out there that will tell you they handle personal injury cases. They'll make a claim for you and try to settle it. But what if the insurance company's offer is too low? Or the claim is denied? The only way you can force the insurance company to pay you fairly is to litigate the claim by filing a lawsuit in court. Not all law firms, however, are willing - or even know how - to litigate personal injury claims. Unlike many other law firms, Portner & Shure has an entire department dedicated to litigation. In fact, law firms that lack a litigation department send the cases they can't settle to us to litigate for them. Here is why you should come to a law firm with an experienced litigation group from the start:
1. Only litigation can secure a verdict for you.
When you've been injured in a car accident, a common thought is that the case will be "cut and dry." You may think - this accident was clearly the other driver's fault. Even the police officer said so in his report. I had to go to the emergency room and the other driver said his insurance would take care of everything. Although your case may seem straightforward to you, personal injury cases are not always cut and dry. Insurance companies routinely deny liability for personal injury claims for reasons that are weak, unfair, and unjustifiable. It's not uncommon for an insurance adjuster to deny a claim based on her insured's statement to his insurance company that he was the one who had the green light, even if this statement conflicts with what the police officer concluded in his report. If this happens to you and the law firm you've chosen does not litigate, you will find yourself at an impasse. At Portner & Shure, our litigation team will take your case to court and prove to the judge or jury that the other driver was at fault. A verdict is not optional; the insurance company will have to pay your claim.
2. The threat of litigation improves settlement offers.
Insurance adjusters frequently deny claims in hopes that the injured party will get tired of fighting and give up. Or, the adjuster might give a nuisance value offer in hopes that you will just accept it and go on your way. The insurance companies keep track of which law firms give up or accept these types of offers, and which ones actually litigate the claims. Any law firm can tell the adjuster they are going to file suit, but a threat with no teeth isn't a threat; it's a bluff. Because of our active litigation department, a threat to file suit from Portner & Shure is a credible threat, and it gets results. Adjusters know they will be faced with the increased costs of litigation if they do not settle the case, and we obtain better settlement offers as a result.
3. Our claims team and our litigation team work together.
At Portner & Shure, we make every effort to settle your claim without the necessity of litigation. But if your case has to go that route, you will be happy to know that our litigation department is just a walk down the hall from the paralegals who have handled your case since the beginning in the claims department. Your original paralegal will remain involved in your case, providing a seamless transition between the two departments. It also enables our litigation department to file your suit as quickly as possible.