One of the first questions many people ask when they are discussing a personal injury case is how long it will take to settle the claim. It is understandable that an accident victim is concerned about the length of time it takes to receive compensation because the financial damages in an accident claim can be substantial. It can be overwhelming to try to make ends meet when you are out of work due to an accident injury. Unfortunately, it is often difficult to give a standard answer to this question because so many variables are involved. Below are five elements that can impact the timeline of your personal injury case.
Seriousness of Your Injury
Depending on the seriousness of your injury, it can take weeks, months, or even longer for you to heal from your injuries and some injuries are permanent. It can take months or even a year to determine your maximum medical improvement. An attorney needs to discuss your future prognosis with your doctors and specialists before being submitting a claim because he wants to ensure he includes all future damages in the settlement demand. Once you settle your claim, you cannot go back for more money, so it is crucial you include all damages in your settlement agreement. Therefore, clients with serious or permanent injuries will have a lengthier process before settlement.
Determining liability may be simple and straightforward, or it may be complex. If the other party admits fault, the claim process will go much more quickly compared to a situation in which the other party denies responsibility. In the latter case, the victim’s attorney may need to conduct an investigation to determine fault or find evidence of liability. To receive compensation, you must prove the other party is at fault. In some cases, this may require the filing of a personal injury lawsuit if the insurance company for the other party continues to deny liability.
A Request for Documentation
An attorney may need to request documentation from doctors or other parties, which can be a lengthy part of the process. Sometimes, they must make multiple attempts to gain the information before they can move forward with the claim.
Some health care providers place a lien on the claim to ensure payment for services provided. The attorney must verify that the lien is valid and verify the correct amount due to the health care provider. In some cases, the attorney may attempt to negotiate a lower payment to the health care provider to secure more money for the client. This process can also add time to the length of the case.
Insurance Company Delays
The insurance company for the other party is also working to obtain information and records. It may have delays that impact the entire claim and prevent a quick settlement. The insurance company and victim may not agree with the settlement offer, which means any settlement will be delayed as they continue to negotiate.
There may be other factors that influence the timeline for each personal injury case. The important thing is that the attorney you choose keeps working to move forward and communicates with you regarding the status of your case.
Call a New Orleans Accident Attorney for Help
Our accident attorneys work hard to move your personal injury claim along as quickly as possible while keeping you up-to-date on the progress of your claim. Please contact Attorney Fred Olinde of The Olinde Firm by calling (504) 587-1440 or 1-800-587-1889 to request your free consultation and no-obligation case evaluation.