After a major accident happens, it can seriously derail your entire life. Suddenly, you’re not able to work and take care of your family. Medical bills will start to pile up from the care you received. With no income coming in and more bills making their way, receiving your injury claim might seem out of reach into far away. That’s why hiring a personal injury lawyer in New Orleans is essential.
In fact, you might be living every single day wondering where your money’s at. How long will it take to get to you? Every day counts as you desperately sit and wait for financial help. What many don’t know is that there are multiple factors in play when it comes to how and when you receive your injury settlement. It’s all about timing on your part, even though timing is essential on their part.
In reality, these types of decisions seem to work in a vacuum. Your injury claim settlement cannot come quick enough, but no one else understands your situation like you. It may seem to move at a snail’s pace, adding even more frustration and aggravation to your situation. Either way, you must get settled in and get ready for the long haul.
There’s no easy way to say this. Injury settlements can take many weeks or even several years to accomplish. Every case is different, including the time it takes to research the facts, investigate the situation, see who all are involved, and what factors are involved. No one is just going to randomly cut you a check. They’re going to have to take time to investigate the claim first. This is not what you want to hear, but it’s simply how things are done.
Because there are so many factors involved, in most cases the claims are settled within a year or two. Here are several steps you can take to help expedite the process and ensure you get the injury claim that you need.
Step #1: Talk to an Attorney
The very first step you should take is talking to an attorney. This is especially true if your injury is serious, like a broken bone or if your medical bills are set to nearly bankrupt you. You to be out of work for a while, so talking to a lawyer and even deciding to hire them will help you in this process. You’ll want to do this immediately as soon as you get settled after being treated to ensure the ball gets rolling.
Step #2: Preparing Your Case
Most states have a statute of limitations that determine how long you have before you file a claim. Every state is different in how they do it, so talking with your lawyer is a great first step in getting the case started. There’ll be paperwork involved in you have to sign some things, as well as communicating with the other party that you’re about to file an injury claim.
Step #3: Investigation and Discovery
As stated previously, there’s going to be a period of investigation. Both sides are going to want to look at the facts. Medical records, police reports, witness statements, and everything else is going to be considered in this case. Your lawyer is going to have to gather and find these documents, as well as handling any disputes the other party might have about what happened. In a lot of cases, the other party does fight the allegations they might tell a different version of the story. This is why the investigation and discovery part so essential. It’s also the longest part of the process taking as long as six months to one year.
Step #4: Starting the Court Process
Any number of things can happen after the discovery portion. The judge may decide to dismiss your case or dismiss the other party’s claims. Judgment may automatically be rendered or the case moved to a different venue. There are always different things that can pop up.
Step #5: Negotiating a Settlement
Most of the time, the case will be settled. The other side might not want to fight for the details are very clear on what happened. There’ll be a negotiation process and have no sites can agree or settlement isn’t reached, then your lawyer may file a lawsuit.
Step# 6: Trial and Verdict
The trial will begin and sometimes a settlement happens during this period. You never know what will happen, but in about 1 to 2 years from the time that you file the lawsuit, the case will be decided by a judge and/or jury. If you win your case, then the other party will always use the amount the judge and/or jury states.
Step #7: The Other Side May File an Appeal
The undersigned will have a legal right to file an appeal if they don’t agree with the decision. If they win their appeal, there might be a new trial or a different settlement agreed upon. This is when the process would most likely start all over. Hopefully this doesn’t occur in your situation and the other party accepts the decision.
Court cases are never fun and they may seem not to be worth it, damages can be awarded that not only will reimburse you for your time off of work, but also for your pain and suffering and other damages that might have occurred during the accident. It’s important to immediately call a lawyer to get the ball rolling. The last thing you want to do is to wait and leave things up to chance.