Can I appeal if I was not awarded enough money to pay my medical bills after a crash? 6 Answers as of February 20, 2012I was involved in an auto accident. The other driver was at fault. Allstate offered to settle at 25% of what I owed in medical fees from accident. We took them to court and they jury found defendant guilty but did not award enough to pay the past medical bills. Am I able to appeal?
Ewusiak & Roberts, P.A. | Christopher J. Roberts
The lawyer who represented you at trial should be able to tell you if there are any legal grounds for an appeal. You cannot appeal merely because you don't like the result. Unfortunately, that is the risk you take when you try a case to verdict. However, you can appeal if you feel that a significant legal or factual mistake was made by the judge or the jury, leading to an incorrect or unjust result. For example, if you feel the jury's verdict was against "the manifest weight of the evidence," or the result of unfair prejudice that you can prove somehow, you could potentially convince an appeals court to give you another trial. Alternatively, if the judge made an error in a major evidentiary or other ruling that you and your lawyer feel affected the outcome unfairly, that could give you grounds for appeal. It is very difficult to win an appeal such as this, because appeals court judges tend to want to err on the side of letting the jury decide the outcome. However, it is possible that you could prevail and if you think there are grounds, discuss it with your lawyer or you can hire a separate appellate lawyer to look at your case. Note that is very unlikely an appeals court would increase your verdict even if you won an appeal. The most likely successful outcome would be a new trial. So you would start the process over again with a new jury. That is expensive and time-consuming, so you should think very hard about whether it is worth it to you to go through that process for an extremely uncertain result. Keep in mind that you could go through all of that trouble, get a new trial, and then lose the trial on the second go around.
Answer Applies to: Florida