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Does 3 percent sound about right?

October 23, 2011

Stephen Gillers, a professor at the New York University School of Law who specializes in legal ethics, is quoted recently, saying that only 3 percent of cases are litigated all the way through to a jury verdict. We have heard similar percentage numbers over the years, and this does sound about right based upon our experience and observations. The estimated 97 percent of settled cases would include cases that proceed to trial, but where the insurance company’s offer of settlement is made during trial and is accepted prior to the jury verdict. Accepting a settlement offer is ultimately a clients’ decision, although the client will usually look to their attorney for advice and recommendations. “When a case is settled, we say that both sides have won because the case was compromised,” Professor Gillers said.

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