If you’re ever injured in an accident resulting from the negligence of another party, you can file a claim with their insurance to seek a personal injury settlement. Personal injury settlements allow victims to receive compensation for their medical bills, lost wages, and other damages caused by someone else’s negligence. Such settlements may be the result of negotiations or court judgments.
The terms of every settlement are unique. Sometimes, parties involved in a personal injury settlement may want to keep certain information confidential. If so, they may ask the victim to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) before receiving compensation. An NDA is a legal agreement prohibiting one or more parties from sharing confidential information with others.
The use of an NDA in a personal injury settlement can have both positive and negative effects. Here are some ways in which an NDA might affect a personal injury settlement:
Positive Effects of an NDA on a Personal Injury Settlement
- Protecting the victim’s privacy: The defendant in a personal injury case isn’t always the only party who may wish to keep certain information about the case secret. For example, personal injury victims may not want their injuries to be made public. This is especially true in cases where the injuries affect the victim’s personal life. An NDA can help protect the victim’s privacy by ensuring the other parties involved can’t discuss their injuries once the case has been settled.
- Avoiding negative publicity: The other party may want to avoid negative publicity by keeping the details of the settlement private. This is especially true if the other party is a company or individual with a public image to protect.
- Encouraging settlement: Parties involved in a personal injury lawsuit may be more likely to settle if an NDA is in place. The NDA provides an extra layer of confidentiality, which can make the other party more comfortable with settling the case. This could also help all parties involved avoid the cost of a lengthy trial.
Negative Effects of an NDA on a Personal Injury Settlement
- Hiding information: An NDA can prevent the victim from disclosing information about the settlement. For instance, it might prevent them from discussing the amount of compensation received. This can prevent other victims from knowing what a fair settlement might be in similar cases.
- Lack of accountability: When settlements are kept confidential, there is a risk that the other party may not be held accountable for their actions. This is especially true if the other party is a repeat offender or has a history of negligence.
- Limitations on future legal action: An NDA may include provisions that limit the victim’s ability to take future legal action against the other party. For example, the victim may be prevented from filing a lawsuit or making public statements about the settlement.
All that said, if the terms of your settlement include agreeing to an NDA, you need to ensure you don’t accidentally violate it. This could prevent you from receiving the compensation for which you’re eligible.
If you have proper legal representation, your lawyer can discuss the NDA with you, answering any questions you may have about how it affects your case. At Russell & Hill, our Washington State personal injury lawyers are dedicated to ensuring our clients are fully informed about all details of their settlements. If you believe you have a valid case, learn more about what we can do for you by calling us at 800-529-0842 today.