In car accidents, it’s usually clear who the at-fault party is. However, if you ask the people involved who’s to blame, chances are they’ll say the other person is. No one wants to admit that they’re at fault, which is why there are so many car accident lawsuits.
The first step in initiating a car accident lawsuit is to file a claim. A claims adjuster will investigate your case and try to determine who was at fault; but, if there’s a counterclaim filed against you, the adjuster might try to hold you accountable. This is why you need a skilled car accident attorney on your side.
What Is a Counterclaim?
If someone is being sued, but they believe the other party is liable, they have the option to file a counterclaim. Essentially, this is their way of showing the insurance company they are not at fault; instead, they are the victim. If a counterclaim is filed, your situation will become more complex. However, the proper attorney can help you. They’ll be able to respond to the counterclaim and start settlement negotiations with the claims adjuster.
Why Are Counterclaims Filed?
There’s no specific reason why a counterclaim is filed. The most common scenario is when the other driver sues you before police or an adjuster can complete the investigation. With an incomplete investigation, the driver is trying to receive compensation before the police report lists them as at fault for the accident.
Counterclaims may be filed because the other driver’s insurance refuses to pay for your medical bills, lost wages, or car repairs. It may seem like you don’t have a chance since you weren’t the first to file a claim, but some drivers file claims despite knowing they’re liable for the accident. A skilled attorney can better help you navigate the complexities of a counterclaim.
Can You Settle a Counterclaim?
The good news is that you can settle counterclaims just like you’d settle your lawsuit. Most car accidents actually settle, and very few go to trial. Your attorney will still negotiate with the insurance company for a fair settlement of your case. Their goal is for you to receive as much money as your claim is worth.
If your attorney believes you have a strong case, they won’t accept a low offer. However, if they think you’d have less than a 50% chance of winning if the case goes to trial, the lawyer may suggest taking the settlement, regardless of the amount.
Aggressive Car Accident Attorneys in Michigan
If someone filed a counterclaim against you or you wish to file one, you need the help of a trusted attorney as soon as possible. A knowledgeable attorney will fight for you to win financial compensation for your car accident injuries.
The attorneys at the Michigan Legal Center specialize in representing clients injured in auto accidents. With more than 20 years of experience and over $200 million worth of legal case victories, we consider it our job to fight for Michigan residents. Our team is here to answer any questions you may have and offer advice on the next steps to receive compensation.
Call 248-886-8650 or complete our online contact form to schedule a free consultation.