If you were hurt due to someone else’s negligence, you may be considering filing a personal injury claim. Whether the injury is from a car crash, slip and fall, or workplace injury, a personal injury lawyer can help you obtain the compensation you need for medical treatment, wages lost, and more.
The length of time it takes to receive a personal injury claim settlement will vary and can be based on several factors. Liability and the amount of compensation demanded are two factors that can determine how long it will take to conclude a personal injury settlement.
Liability is the state of being responsible for the accident or conditions that led to injuries. In a personal injury case, it must be proven that a driver or entity, such as a business, is responsible for the accident or injuries. If liability is disputed, it can take longer to resolve a claim.
It’s important to recognize that Florida is considered a “no-fault” state, which means that when it comes to making an insurance claim, drivers have benefits to cover medical bills and lost wages no matter who caused the accident. However, this does not mean you can’t bring forward a personal injury claim. If your medical bills and lost wages exceed the policy’s limit, a victim can file a lawsuit against the driver at fault for the crash.
The Personal Injury Claims Process
The first step in a personal injury claim is getting medical treatment so that your injuries are documented. No matter how you were injured, whether at work, in a car, or as a pedestrian, you should always receive medical aid. Keep track of your medical treatments and appointments.
Once you are well enough, contact an attorney. Your attorney can begin the claims process as you recover from your injuries. During this time, your lawyer may gather all the necessary records, including a police report, if one was filed, medical records, insurance information, and more.
Making a Demand
A demand letter will be sent to the insurance adjuster that will detail the amount needed to settle the case. The lawyer may also note that if the demand is not met, a lawsuit will be filed. If your lawyer does not receive a response, they may follow up with a phone call.
Negotiating a Personal Injury Settlement
The insurance company will evaluate your demand and attempt to point out weaknesses, such as unnecessary medical treatments. They will then issue a counteroffer to your demand, which is usually lower than the initial demand. How long it takes to negotiate a settlement depends upon the monetary goals set by the defendant's and plaintiff's legal teams, and how flexible they are in monetary value.
Your lawyer may continue to negotiate with the insurance company, which can take weeks or months depending on the unique characteristics of each case.
Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit
If each party cannot reach a settlement, your lawyer can file a lawsuit against the defendant. By filing a lawsuit, your attorney is showing that you are serious about receiving a fair and just settlement.
Filing a lawsuit does not necessary mean you go to court. After filing the lawsuit, the defendant may continue to negotiate a personal injury claim settlement.
If you do go to court, it could take up to a year after the lawsuit was filed to go to trial. The length of the trial will depend on the complexity of each case. Should you reach a settlement before going to court, which is also common, your lawyer will inform the court the case has been settled.
So How Long Does a Personal Injury Lawsuit Take?
There is no set amount of time for how long it takes to settle a personal injury claim. Some injury claims may take only a few weeks or months, but those that go to court could take more than a year.
Personal injury lawyer Justin Weinstein can thoroughly explain the claims process and determine if you have a valid case. Don’t hesitate to contact Weinstein Legal, as the statute of limitations limits how long you have to file a personal injury claim.
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