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The settlement process in a trucking accident

New Jersey residents who have been injured in a truck accident might wonder what is involved in coming to a settlement rather than pursuing litigation. There may be both advantages and disadvantages for the plaintiff in agreeing to a settlement. A settlement may be reached through arbitration, negotiation or mediation.

The latter two are nonbinding while arbitration is legally binding and replaces the court process. Many people prefer settlements because it allows all parties to work together toward a resolution instead of taking an adversarial stance toward one another. This means that they can be open and honest in discussing issues such as how much responsibility each party bears for the accident. A settlement might also be quicker than litigation.

However, it can have its drawbacks. Sometimes, plaintiffs hope that a lawsuit will bring publicity to highlight a particular problem or failing, and with a settlement, this does not happen. Furthermore, a plaintiff may have to waive the rights to any other legal proceedings. The settlement might also be considerably less than what a person might get in a case that goes to court. If a settlement is agreed upon, it may be given in a lump sum or it might be structured as payments over a period of time.

Fatigue can be a particular problem for truck drivers, and truck accidents can be devastating because a tractor-trailer is capable of so much damage. People who are injured in a truck accident might face weeks, months or years of rehabilitation. They may want to contact an attorney about obtaining more compensation than an insurance company initially offers.

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