Will an Arbitration Clause Affect Your Personal Injury Claim?

Categories: Personal Injury

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Washington Arbitration Clause and Personal Injury Attorneys

Arbitration is a common course of action in personal injury lawsuits. Lately, they have been shown in the news for cases involving the NFL, and even Lance Armstrong. Arbitration, however, is nothing new. It is one of the many options for resolving a case.

In some cases, however, it is the only choice. If there is an arbitration clause in an agreement signed between the defendant and plaintiff, both parties may be forced to engage in arbitration instead of going to court.

What is the Arbitration Clause?

Arbitration clauses are typically found in contracts. They require each signing party to go through arbitration instead of litigation. This resolves disputes about the contract.

While arbitration in some cases is cheaper, many parties prefer to avoid litigation anyway when disputing a contract or resolving a personal injury case. After all, litigation is extremely costly.

For workers, an employment contract may require that they dispute all work-related injuries through arbitration. These clauses may also come into play for nursing home injuries, medical malpractice, and facility waivers.

Arbitration can take numerous forms, including a neutral third party or panel that decides the proper route for resolution. Often, these meetings are informal and do not have the same rules and requirements of personal injury lawsuits in front of a judge.

Not all arbitration clauses in a contract are enforceable; however, it depends on the language of the contract. The courts may uphold the contract if it has the legal wording.

Can Arbitration Affect an Injury Case?

If you are filing a personal injury claim and you have an arbitration clause in an agreement with the defendant, then you may be forced to go into arbitration. Both parties must agree on an arbitrator or a panel that will decide the fate of the claim. Also, the rules of evidence are typically more relaxed in these types of claims, which makes it easier for your Washington injury lawyer to present his or her case.

The arbitrator or panel’s decision is final and you cannot appeal that decision; therefore, it is important that your personal injury attorney lay out the best evidence and present the case clearly during the process.

There are instances where arbitration may be reopened, but this only occurs in rare situations.

The final ruling is a double-edged sword. It ensures that the defendant cannot overturn an unfavorable ruling too. So, it can be beneficial for the plaintiff when compared to litigation.

Every injury case is unique. Therefore, if your case involves an arbitration clause between you and the defendant, it is in your best interest to contact an injury lawyer. Schedule a meeting today with the team at Brett McCandlis Brown, PLLC by calling 800-925-1875 or you may request more information online.