What Percentage of Car Accident Cases Go to Trial?

On average, there are over 6 million car accidents in the US every year.

Car accidents are not uncommon occurrences. From minor fender benders to serious collisions, they can have a lasting impact on the lives of those involved. As the dust settles after the initial shock, many people wonder how these cases are typically resolved.

But what percentage of car accident cases go to trial? Do they often end up in a courtroom showdown, or is there a more common path to resolution?

Let’s find out.

Settlements vs. Trials

Car accident claims arise when someone is injured or has their property damaged by the recklessness of another driver. In these situations, the injured party may seek compensation for the following:

  • Lost wages
  • Medical bills
  • Pain and suffering
  • Property repairs
  • Car repairs

If the two parties on either side of the claims cannot come to an agreement on compensation and fault, then it will go to a trial. An auto accident case going to trial can be a lengthy process, but some people feel like it is the only way to achieve justice.

Settlements are slightly different. Settlements are when the two parties reach ana agreement without the need to go to trial. Both parties sit down and negotiate a compensation package. Once both parties are agreed, the matter is closed and everybody moves on.

Factors Influencing the Decision to Go to Trial

Choosing whether or not to take a car accident claim to trial is a big decision. There are several things that affect this decision. Let’s take a look at some of them:

Liability Disputes

When there is a disagreement about who is at fault for the car accident, reaching a fair settlement can be challenging.

In such cases, the injured party may choose to take the matter to trial. This allows an impartial judge or jury to determine liability.

Insufficient Compensation

Insurance companies don’t always pay out an amount that people consider fair. If this happens, the claimant may decide to roll the dice on a trial to get the money they feel they deserve.

Sometimes, insurance companies may undervalue the damages suffered by the injured party.

They may consider only immediate medical expenses and property damage without taking into account other factors. If you want to know more about this, head to

Policy Limits

Insurance policies have coverage limits. If the at-fault driver’s policy limit is not sufficient to cover the damages, the injured party may go to trial to seek additional compensation from the driver personally.

Denial of Liability

Sometimes, insurance companies may deny liability altogether. In such instances, going to trial may be the only option to prove the at-fault driver’s responsibility and seek compensation.

What Percentage of Car Accident Cases Go to Trial

The vast majority of car accident cases are resolved through settlements, without ever going to trial. It is estimated that approximately 96% of car accident cases are settled out of court.

This high percentage is primarily due to the advantages of settling, such as avoiding lengthy legal proceedings, reducing costs, and gaining more control over the outcome.

There are several reasons why parties may choose to settle instead of going to a lengthy trial. Some of these include:

  • Faster Resolution
  • Cost Savings
  • Reduced Stress
  • Privacy

Sometimes, the parties just want to get things sorted in the most agreeable way possible. A settlement is often the most preferable options for everyone.

Trials – When They Become Necessary

Despite the numerous benefits of settlements. There are instances where going to trial becomes necessary or preferable:

Contesting Liability

If both parties can’t agree on who is at fault for the accident, a trial can provide an impartial resolution.

When liability is contested, both sides may present their evidence and arguments in front of a judge or jury. The decision reached in the trial can settle the dispute over who is responsible for the car accident.

Complex Cases

Some car accident cases involve intricate legal and factual issues that may be best resolved through a trial, where evidence and arguments can be thoroughly examined.

In complex cases, especially those involving multiple parties, shared liability, or severe injuries, the intricacies of the case may require a trial to ensure a fair and just resolution.


In cases where there are no clear legal precedents, going to trial can establish important legal principles for future cases.

This can be especially significant when it comes to determining liability and compensation in complex car accident claims.

High Stakes

Some cases are so bad that the injured party’s life is significantly impacted by the car accident. This could be things such as permanent disabilities or extensive medical treatment.

A trial may be sought to secure adequate compensation to cover the long-term and life-altering consequences.

Assess If a Trial Is the Best For You

Car accidents are unfortunate events that can have lasting impacts on individuals’ lives. While most car accident cases are settled outside of court, a small percentage end up going to trial.

Understanding the factors that influence the decision to go to trial can help individuals involved in car accident claims make informed choices about how to pursue justice and receive proper recompense for their losses.

If you enjoyed this article about what percentage of car accident cases go to trial, be sure to check out some more of our amazing content on our blog today. We cover a wide range of topics and have articles that cater to all tastes. Have a look today!

Fazal Abbas

My name is Fazal Abbas, and I am a highly skilled and accomplished blogger with a passion for creating engaging and informative content. Over the years, I have honed my writing skills and developed a deep understanding of what resonates with readers. As a blogger, I am confident that I can deliver the high-quality content that my clients and readers expect, and I am committed to staying up-to-date with the latest trends and developments in the industry. I am always looking for new ways to innovate and push the boundaries of what is possible in the world of blogging and content creation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button