How Can I Tell What is a Reasonable Settlement in a Civil Case?
Evaluating Settlement Options
Whether through mediation or just the ordinary course of your attorney negotiating with the other side, you are likely to face a decision or series of decisions about what you are willing to do or accept to settle the case.
This is normal. Over 97% of civil cases settle before going to trial. It is also normal to be unsure how to think about a reasonable settlement.
You of course will be advised by your attorney what they think is reasonable. It is also helpful to understand the basic analysis. That is: what is the maximum potential liability, and what is your attorney's best estimate of the chances of that outcome occurring.
By way of example, if the maximum recovery is $100,000 and the plaintiff has a 50% chance of winning, most attorneys would put the settlement value at $50,000.
Understand though that each side puts different numbers on that. A plaintiff's attorney might say a 75% chance of $100,000, while the defense says it is a 40% chance of recovering $60,000. In that scenario, one side things the settlement value is $75,000, while the other side thinks it is $24,000. In most cases, finding a place in between those two numbers is how you get to a settlement.
Learn more here about civil lawsuit settlements.
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