The Judicial Council of California reported 636,142 total civil case filings in 2022. Not every one of these cases made it to litigation or even ended favorably to the plaintiff.
The decision to pursue litigation requires careful evaluation to determine whether it is worth litigating.
Strength of your case
You want to examine the facts, evidence and legal principles that support your claims. Ask yourself whether you can present a compelling case with a reasonable chance of success. Strong, well-documented cases are more likely to yield favorable outcomes in litigation.
The extent of damages or relief sought
Consider the nature and extent of the damages or relief you are seeking through litigation. If the potential gains are substantial and justify the time, expense and emotional toll of litigation, it may be worth pursuing. Conversely, if the damages are relatively minor, alternative dispute resolution methods may be a more cost-effective option.
Costs and resources
Evaluate the financial and time resources required for litigation. Civil lawsuits can be expensive, involving court fees, attorney fees, expert witness costs and other expenses. Additionally, litigation can be a lengthy process, potentially lasting for months or even years. Ensure you have the resources and stamina to see the case through.
Research legal precedents in your jurisdiction to gain insights into similar cases. Understanding how past cases with similar facts and legal issues ended can provide guidance on the potential outcome of your own case.
Emotional and personal considerations
Consider the emotional toll of litigation. Lawsuits can be emotionally draining and may strain personal relationships. Weigh the emotional cost against the potential benefits of pursuing the case.
Determining whether your civil case is worth litigating requires a comprehensive evaluation. It is essential to approach the decision with a clear understanding of your goals and a realistic assessment of your case’s merits.