One of the most common questions that personal injury lawyers are asked revolve around the timelines for personal injury cases. Many people inquire about how long a personal injury case may take, what the process involves and how long it might be until they see justice. Unfortunately this question is difficult to answer as there are many other factors that must be considered. In order to better find out how long a case might take it’s important to first establish the details of the case as well as what needs to happen in order for the case to be resolved.
There are different stages when it comes to personal injury cases that can lead to a conclusion. The first stage depends on how long it takes the victim to recover from their injuries. This stage concludes when the victim has recovered and is discharged from their medical treatment relating to the injury. Most lawyers prefer to wait until a victim has recovered from their injuries or a doctor has stated that they have reached their maximum medical improvement before beginning negotiations. This is due to the victim will then be aware of the full impact of their injuries which will aid in negotiations.
Submitting A Claim
In a standard personal injury case once a victim is discharged from their medical care preparations are underway for a case for submission to the insurance company. The preparations conclude compiling final bills and medical records and then confirming the missed time from work. At this stage a package will be prepared that has all the documents and evidence explaining the damages and losses incurred. This is when a “value” tacked on to the claim.
Once a submittal package is sent the next stage is negotiations. It is standard for it to take about 4 to 8 weeks for an insurance adjuster to look over the package and negotiate further. Once an insurance company makes the first offer it can take anywhere from a week to several months for the negotiation process. Each offer will be discussed with the victim and a reasonable offer is usually obtained. If a reasonable offer is not made then this is the point where litigation begins. This process can also start if the recovery time for the victim is extended. If there is litigation it does not necessarily mean that there will be a trial. There is also plenty of time of settlements as well once the insurance company accepts the value of the claim.
A personal injury case depending upon the variables can take a long time. The most important aspect is recovery. This is why it’s best to put all trust in a law firm capable of managing the personal injury case. Once a full recovery or the best expected recovery is made then the negotiation process can begin and the sooner the lawsuit can be resolved. Those involved in personal injury accidents suffer enough they don’t need to suffer through proceedings too.
Sam Moser graduated from the School of Journalism at Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada.” His interest in law proceedings brought him across the KCY AT LAW website.