If your injury claim negotiations fail, the next logical step is to file a lawsuit and get the court's help in settling the case. That is your right, but you shouldn't take it lightly because you don't want to risk instigating a lawsuit with no chance of succeeding. This is why you need to take these four steps first:
Confirm That You Actually Have a Case
You don't have a valid personal injury claim just because you were injured by another person's negligence. Maybe you were committing a crime at the time of your injury or contributed in some way to the said injuries (if contributory negligence laws apply in your state). Depending on the circumstances of your injuries, you may not have a valid injury claim in both cases. Therefore, confirm the legal basis for your claim before proceeding.
Make Sure You Have the Right Defendant
Have you considered that the defendant or their insurance company is refusing to pay your damages because they aren't liable for the damages? This is usually the case when an injury victim files a claim against the wrong party. Therefore, confirm that the person you named in your demand letter is actually responsible for your damages. For example, if you were suing a company driver for crashing into your car, consider whether you should really be suing the driver's employer or the manufacturer of the car.
Preserve All the Evidence and Witnesses' Contacts
Preserving evidence and witnesses' contacts ensures that you have the arsenal to fight for your case during litigation. If you can't prove your case, then you don't stand a good chance of winning your injury claim even if it is "clear" the defendant is liable. Gather all your medical bills and records, put your witnesses' contacts in a file (in a safe place), make copies of all photographs associated with the incident, and preserve all physical evidence associated with your injuries (such as a torn and bloody shirt).
Get a Written Reason for the Refusal
Another useful step is to ensure that the insurance adjuster you have been dealing with has actually refused your claim. It doesn't pay to rush to litigation when the adjuster is just playing hardball (a common negotiation tactic). If you can get the adjuster to refuse your claim in writing, it means the insurance company isn't actually willing to pay (the amount you are demanding).
Consulting a personal injury lawyer will help you take care of the above precautions – and more. That way you can file the lawsuit without fear.