I got in a car accident. I have a lot of medical bills and my back aches. How long will it take to get a settlement from a car accident?
Long Court Process
Courts have a lot of cases on the docket. It can be difficult to even get a date on the court calendar.
That is why many insurance companies will try to negotiate with you directly. What type of guarantee is there for a court hearing? The insurance companies might be forced to pay a lot of money.
When they negotiate with you, they have more control over the final amount paid. While you can figure out the vast majority of legal terminology yourself, you probably don’t have a clue of what a fair legal settlement is. That is where a good attorney can help.
He can assess the merits of your case. He can estimate what you might be due based on what other people were paid. You need to look at the long-term costs when you negotiate a legal settlement.
Long Term Medical Costs
You may feel fine after an accident. But, it is still wise for you to go to the hospital. They can run the right medical checks (i.e. X-Rays) to see if there might be some internal damage.
This also starts a medical record that you can show the insurance company. They are more likely to pay you more money when you can prove that you have some medical problems.
Medical costs can be very high. You must include prescription medication, ambulance transportation, hospital bills, doctors’ bills, rehabilitation and so forth in any legal settlement. You are also due compensation for lost days from work, as well as pain and suffering.
What will you do if you can no longer work? You might have more aches and pains after a couple of years. You might get arthritis or have debilitating back pain.
You only get a legal settlement one time, so you need to get a high amount that will pay for a potential lifetime of medical bills. Get fair compensation.
No Fault States
It also depends on your state auto insurance laws. Some states have become no-fault states, which means that your insurance company will pay you benefits, irrespective of who was at fault. This has sped up the payment of medical bills.
The following states have no-fault auto insurance: Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and Utah. But be warned, this list does change.
Of course, the timeline for an insurance company paying you after a car accident might depend on property damage and personal injuries in no-fault states. Each case is different. It takes time to collect the evidence.
In fault auto insurance states, it is likely to take longer to receive a payment. A trial might be necessary to determine guilt.
Each state is different. Your insurance company may be required to reject a claim or make a settlement offer within 60 days. Will that settlement be fair? Not necessarily, but at least it is a start.
In many jurisdictions once a settlement is made, you will have about 90 days to wait for payment. It all depends on the specific details of your car accident and whether you live in a no-fault auto insurance state or not.
Jim Treebold is a North Carolina based writer. He lives by the mantra of “Learn 1 new thing each day”! Jim loves to write, read, pedal around on his electric bike and dream of big things. Drop him a line if you like his writing, he loves hearing from his readers!