Do Car Accident Cases Take a Long Time to Settle?
Car accidents are a common occurrence on our roads and highways. Unfortunately, they can result in serious injuries and property damage. In such cases, victims may need to file a personal injury claim to seek compensation for their losses. One of the most common questions that clients ask injury lawyers is how long a car accident case typically takes.
The answer to this question depends on several factors, such as the complexity of the case, the severity of the injuries, and the willingness of the insurance company to negotiate a settlement. However, in general, most car accident cases take between six months to two years to reach a resolution. Let’s take a closer look at each stage of the process and how long they typically take.
Investigation and Filing a Claim
After a car accident, the first step is to gather evidence and information about the accident. This includes obtaining police reports, medical records, and witness statements. The process can take a few weeks to a few months, depending on the complexity of the case.
Once the investigation is complete, the victim’s lawyer will file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. The insurance company will then conduct its investigation to determine liability and evaluate the damages. This process can take anywhere from a few weeks to several months.
Negotiating a Settlement
After the insurance company completes its investigation, it will make an initial settlement offer to the victim. The victim’s lawyer will then negotiate with the insurance company to try to reach a fair settlement. This can be a lengthy process, and it may take several rounds of negotiation before both parties reach a mutually acceptable agreement. This process can take several months to a year or more, depending on the complexity of the case and the willingness of the insurance company to negotiate.
Filing a Lawsuit
If the victim and the insurance company cannot reach a settlement, the next step is to file a lawsuit. The process of filing a lawsuit can take several months, and the trial itself can take anywhere from a few days to several weeks. However, most car accident cases are settled before they reach trial.
If the case goes to trial, the judge or jury will determine the amount of damages to award the victim. If the case is settled out of court, the victim and the insurance company will agree on a final settlement amount. Once the settlement is reached, it can take a few weeks to several months for the victim to receive the settlement check.
The length of a car accident case can vary widely depending on the circumstances of the accident, the extent of the injuries, and the willingness of the insurance company to negotiate a settlement. While some cases can be resolved in a few months, others may take several years to reach a resolution. A skilled injury lawyer can help you navigate the legal process and work to get you the compensation you deserve.
If you’ve been in a car accident you have rights and one of our skilled, experienced California lawyers can help. Schedule a free consultation below to learn more about your options.
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