How Long Will My Personal Injury Claim Take To Settle?
Personal injury claims are some of the most unpredictable claims out there as far as time frames are concerned. That being said in most states a personal injury claim has a statute of limitations. What that means is the claim has to be brought against another person within a certain time frame. The statute of limitations in Florida for a typical personal injury claim is four years from the date the incident occurred. However, that doesn’t mean that the case has to be settled within those four years, it means that the lawsuit must be filed within four years.
At the start of your personal injury claim, the most important thing to do is seek medical care for any injuries you have suffered. If you are hurt by a negligent party, you should receive care as soon as possible for the injuries you have suffered to benefit your personal injury case. Prompt medical treatment demonstrates that your pain is significant enough to seek immediate medical care. It proves to the insurance company that you’re not faking any injuries.
The most important part of a personal injury case is the medical care you receive. The nature and length of your medical treatment typically influence the amount of time your case takes to settle. For example, if a client is in a minor accident and receives only limited short-term medical care at an urgent care center, your attorney could then proceed with settlement negotiations on your behalf. In this instance, the case could resolve quickly due to limited medical care. In the unfortunate instance that your injuries are more severe and your treatment becomes ongoing, your claim could take much longer to resolve.
The type of personal injury claim you pursue can also determine the time it will take to settle your case. If you are involved in an automobile accident or slip and fall at a grocery store, these two types of personal injury claims have similar processes but both can drastically vary in time frames to settlement. In the event of an automobile accident, the insurance company would first establish liability for the incident. Depending on the details of the incident this can be a quick and painless process or a more intricate process. From there you would seek the necessary medical care required. As mentioned before, your medical care for these types of claims is the most important part of the claim. Remember that whether or not you hire an attorney the claim will likely not proceed to settlement negotiations until you have fully finished with your required medical treatment.
The medical care required could make a case take longer to settle than one with minor medical care or injuries. The good thing about automobile accident cases is that they typically tend to be fairly straight forward with liability determinations. However, that is not always the case and there are instances that result in partial liability which will ultimately change the settlement outcome of the case. Your automobile claim will always be worked directly with the insurance company. One thing to note is that if the case ends up being a long process that requires extensive medical treatment it may not be resolvable directly with the insurance company. If your attorney or you cannot come to a settlement agreement with the insurance company the other option would be to file a lawsuit against the insurance company of the person at fault for the incident.
Filing a lawsuit would only be considered if all other efforts to resolve the automobile claim directly with the insurance company fail. The important thing to understand is that if this occurs you must file a lawsuit before the four year statute of limitations is up. If the lawsuit is not filed it will have to be resolved with the insurance company within the time frame allotted under Florida’s Statute of Limitations.
The statute of limitations varies from state to state so if you are filing a lawsuit in another state, it could be different. The purpose of the statue is to be as fair as possible to all parties. It gives the plaintiff enough time to pursue a claim for compensation for damages such as lost wages, injuries, and pain and suffering. It also gives the defendant a time frame so that they don’t have to be concerned with a civil matter that could last years and years with no foreseeable resolution in sight.
In the event that you are involved in a slip and fall accident, the process could be a bit more drawn out than an automobile accident case, due to liability. When falling on the premise of a shopping plaza or a grocery store the one thing that needs to be proven is whether whatever caused you to fall had either been there long enough to where someone should have noticed it and attended to it or someone was aware of the situation and did not take the necessary actions to rectify the situation.
If you slip and fall on a puddle of water leaking from a freezer in the frozen food section, you or your attorney would have to prove without a doubt that the grocery store either knew about the water leaking and did nothing to prevent someone from injuring themselves or that the water had been leaking long enough to where they should have noticed and taken precautionary measures. For obvious reasons, this ends up being a much more extensive process since proving clear liability on these cases is often difficult.
However, the claim would still attempt to be resolved directly with the insurance company of the negligent party. If the case can not be resolved then a lawsuit will have to be filed against the negligent party much the same way it would be filed in an automobile accident case. Once a lawsuit is filed the statute of limitations is no longer taken into consideration. In these instances, the time frames are not something that can be determined. Armour Law Group personal injury attorneys will do all that they can to make sure your case is handled appropriately. Remember that these things can take a few months or even a few years to resolve. It all depends on the severity of the injuries, the incident itself and the willingness or fairness of the insurance company to resolve the claim for a reasonable amount.
Armour Law Group, Lake Nona personal injury attorneys, understands that nobody wants the hassles of a drawn out lawsuit so we recommend you consult with one of our experienced attorneys to guide you through the process.