How Long Does it Take to Settle a Personal Injury Lawsuit?
One of the most frequently asked questions after someone has been injured in an accident is how quickly their claim can be settled. This is especially true when the accident was the fault of someone else, either another driver or a business whose wet floor was not marked. The answer to that questions, however, is not necessarily an easy one.
If you have been injured in an accident, you have probably gotten many calls from the insurance company. They may be pressuring you to settle the claim for an amount they are willing to pay. However, this quick settlement may not be in your best interests, especially if you have suffered what is known as a soft-tissue injury, such as nerve damage and neck or back pain.
These types of injuries can have lingering effects that could require months of physical therapy or other treatments before they can say you are completely healed. Even injuries like broken bones or those that require surgery can require longer care than anticipated initially.
One of the biggest problems with settling a claim too quickly with an insurance company is that you will be required to sign a release once you agree to the settlement. What this means is that any further treatment beyond your settlement will be your responsibility.
The insurance company will often offer a settlement that is far less than what you should be offered because injuries, even those considered minor, may qualify you to receive the full policy limit. The policy limit is the maximum amount available on an insurance policy.
The insured may also have more than one insurance policy available, providing you with additional options for compensation for your injuries.
The best option after being injured in an accident is to hire a personal injury attorney. In most cases, this will not speed up your settlement and can actually extend the time when you will receive compensation. However, the reasons for this longer settlement period actually work in your favor.
Once the insurance company is aware that you have hired an attorney, they may slow the negotiation process in an effort to push you to settle. In addition, your attorney will want to wait until you are released from the doctor’s care, which indicates you have reached the maximum level of recovery.
Your attorney will also wait until all your medical records and bills have been obtained to be sure no charges are missed in the settlement process. Once records are reviewed, bills collected and the doctor determines you have reached maximum recovery, your attorney will make a demand from the insurance company. Because demand packages often have a considerable amount of information, it may take some time for the insurance company to respond.
Your attorney and the insurance company then negotiate a settlement with the attorney keeping your best interests in mind at all times. Once an agreement is made, your attorney works with the insurance company to be sure a check is issued as quickly as possible.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, contact the personal injury lawyers at Lundy Law today to learn what rights you may have. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Lundy Law will review your case and determine the settlement that will best provide you with that compensation.