In the aftermath of a serious truck accident, injured parties and their families are often upended and disoriented. Dealing with injuries, insurance, and possible litigation can be a lot to deal with all at one time. Even if it is perfectly clear that the truck company is liable for the accident, victims injured in the incident or the families of those lost in the crash are often at a loss regarding how to move forward.
While litigation through the court system seems to be the most familiar course of action, many prefer to settle out of court. Such settlements can be achieved through what is known as alternative dispute resolution (ADR). The most common examples of ADR are negotiation, mediation, and arbitration. ADRs are a way for both sides to speed up the process and save on court costs. In all three of these instances, both parties enter into an out-of-court arrangement to define the terms of a settlement.
What is a Settlement?
A settlement is a dollar amount that addresses the financial needs of the aggrieved party, considering the costs associated with medical bills, permanent disability, property damage, and lost wages, as well as both physical and mental pain and suffering. If the accident results in a wrongful death, the surviving family members may receive damages, which include funeral and burial expenses.
Court versus Settlement
In personal injury cases, such as those involving truck accidents, the injured party brings a complaint against the party they see as responsible for their injuries. If a truck accident case goes to court, a judge decides if the trucking company is liable for the accident, and if so, the victim is awarded damages to compensate them for their injuries. If the accident resulted in a death, the family of the deceased receives the damages. In many cases, the parties involved can come to an agreement without the need for court proceedings.
Types of ADR
The major types of ADR are negotiation, mediation, and arbitration. Negotiation and mediation are non-binding, meaning the parties are not legally held to the agreement. Arbitration, however, is a binding process that can be enforced by law.
During a negotiation, both sides and their representatives discuss options to work out a viable arrangement for monetary compensation to settle the dispute. Mediation entails a neutral, third-party mediator who acts as the go-between for both sides to come to an agreement. Arbitration is the alternative most similar to a courtroom. In this case, the arbitrator listens to both sides before submitting a decision awarding damages.
Cherry Hill Truck Accident Lawyers at DiTomaso Law Help Truck Accident Victims Obtain Compensation
If you or a loved one was injured in an accident involving a truck, the Cherry Hill truck accident lawyers at DiTomaso Law can help. Contact us online or call us at 856-414-0010 to schedule a free consultation. With locations in Philadelphia and Cherry Hill, New Jersey, we provide legal services for clients throughout southeastern Pennsylvania and South Jersey, including Vineland, Mt. Holly, and Camden County.