How Long Does It Take to Resolve a Personal Injury Case?
The reason you may be reading this is that you are contemplating claiming for personal injury.
However, you aren’t sure if you should.
You wonder how long it will take to receive the money on time and when you need it.
Well, the personal injury claim process can take a considerable amount of time to resolve.
Cases on track and without complications may resolve within two years of filing. However, personal injury cases can also take three or four years before settling or arguing in court.
It’s because of the claim process as it is and various influencing factors.
Factors influencing the length of personal injury cases.
The Factors That Influence the Claim Process Time Include:
- If your case settles out of court or goes to trial. Cases that go to trial can take three or four years to wrap up. Cases that don’t go to court are resolved much quicker.
- The nature of your injuries. Injuries that are severe and involve extensive medical treatment may take years to resolve. Minor accidents with not so severe injuries are relatively quick to resolve.
- Whether you hire a personal injury attorney in Glendale or not. Cases that are settled out of court take much less time to wrap up than those that go to trial. Your lawyer has the experience and knowledge to negotiate, quickly determine the cause and work towards a quick resolution.
- The lawyer you choose also has a significant influence on the length of the claim process. Lawyers who don’t specialize or have personal injury experience can take much longer than those with experience.
The Claim Process
Now that you know the factors influencing the claim process, here’s a look at the actual claim process.
1. You start the process by undergoing medical treatment. Forfeiting a medical consultation suggests to the insurance adjuster that your injuries aren’t severe enough. Or that the accident didn’t cause any injuries.
2. Select the right personal injury attorney in Glendale. While you may be able to settle small personal injury claims by yourself, don’t. Lawyers know the system and loopholes and can speed up the process while you focus on recovering.
3. Your lawyer starts the investigation by asking questions. They will ask questions about the accident, about yourself like any past medical conditions, and if you have any treatment.
They then collect all accident bills and records, which may take months depending on your health and injury severity. It’s only after receiving all medical records that they review them to decide if you have a case or not.
4. Your lawyer will try settling the case out of court by making demands to the negligent party’s attorney or insurance company if they are confident of settling your claim.
5. Lawyers generally choose to go to court if the claim involves a permanent injury. They wait till you finish all your medical treatment and till you have recovered as much as doctors expect.
This may take longer, even maybe months.
Your lawyer won’t know how much your case is truly worth if they make earlier demands.
6. It’s only if and when necessary that your lawyer files a lawsuit, which sets the clock running. Each state has its pretrial procedures and statute of limitations.
However, most require one to two years for a personal injury case to go to court.
7. Next comes the discovery phase, where both parties ask questions and exchange document requests. They also take depositions from relevant witnesses. Based on the court deadlines and case complexities, the entire process can take six to twelve months.
8. It’s only after the discovery phase ends that the lawyers consider making a settlement. They may settle the case themselves or opt for mediation were lawyers, clients, and mediators try to settle the case.
9. It’s when the negotiations and mediation do not work that your case goes to trial.
And the trial may last a day, week, or longer. Besides, trials don’t always start at the scheduled date and can reschedule, thus prolonging the process.
With such a lengthy claim process and so many influencing factors, let your Glendale personal injury lawyer handle your case. They can tackle the case better and perhaps quicker while you focus on recovering.