How Long Does it Take to Settle a Personal Injury Case?

You’ve been injured in a Los Angeles accident. Medical bills are piling up, plus you’re forced to miss some time at work to recover, which only makes matters worse. Since someone else is to blame for your accident and injury you’re entitled to compensation.

How long will it take for you to get the money you need and deserve after your car accident? The short answer is that it depends.

Accepting an Early Offer

You will have a lot of decisions to make after your accident. If it’s clear that someone else is to blame you’ll probably be approached by their insurance company with a settlement offer almost immediately. You will probably only have a very short window of time in which you can accept this offer.

If you accept the insurance company’s offer, you’ll be able to walk away with some money within a few weeks of your accident. However, it’s important to know that this lowball offer will likely not cover the full extent of your injuries. Since you’ll be required to sign an accident waiver you probably won’t be able to get additional money in the future.

The best thing to do if you’ve received a settlement offer is to consult with an experienced Los Angeles personal injury attorney immediately. Your attorney will thoroughly investigate your accident, consult with experts to assess the full extent of your injuries, and fight to ensure that you are fairly compensated by the at-fault party.

However, this can extend the amount of time it takes to recover compensation.

Important Factors in Your Los Angeles Personal Injury Claim

If you decide to decline a lowball settlement offer after your accident it can take significantly more time to recover the compensation you deserve. The following factors will be relevant to how long your case takes to settle.

Injuries

In California, you are entitled to recover monetary damages for the financial costs of your accident. Medical bills and expenses related to your injuries will likely make up the largest percentage of the economic damages you are awarded. The best thing to do is wait to settle your case until you’ve fully recovered from your injuries.

Why? You can make sure that you are properly compensated for all of your medical costs and treatment. While you are entitled to an award of reasonably calculable future medical expenses, there is no guaranteeing that you’ll be able to accurately project those costs. The longer you wait to settle, the more certain you can be that you’ll be able to recover damages that cover all of your accident-related financial costs.

Liability

Is everyone in agreement about who is to blame for the accident? Or, are there still discrepancies concerning liability? If everyone is on the same page it should not prolong your settlement. However, disputes about who is to blame can lead to additional investigations, depositions, and other legal proceedings that can lengthen the amount of time your case is litigated.

Damages

In California, accident victims are generally entitled to both economic and non-economic damages. Since economic damages are capped at the financial costs a victim incurs because of an accident and injury, they can be fairly simple to calculate. Non-economic damages, however, are paid to compensate victims for injuries that are, by their very nature, difficult to value in terms of dollars and cents.

How much are your pain and suffering worth? What about the emotional trauma of the accident? You and the defendant may have very different ideas about how these damages should be calculated. Disagreements in how to value certain damages can extend the amount of time it takes to settle your case.

Need More Help?

If you’ve been injured in a Los Angeles accident and someone else is to blame you may be entitled to compensation. The amount of time it takes to recover money after your accident will depend on a variety of factors relevant to your case. If you decide to accept an early lowball offer, you can have money-in-hand in a matter of weeks. If you decide to litigate your claim, it may take several months or more to get the money you deserve.

Contact the Los Angeles personal injury team at Citywide Law Group to find out how we can help you get the money you deserve after your accident. We offer a free case evaluation, so do not hesitate to call us now.