A car accident lawsuit may be resolved in your favor in a couple of different ways. By far the most common outcome is a settlement agreement with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. This may be achieved without filing a lawsuit, although filing a lawsuit may be necessary to make the insurer take your claim seriously.
If your case does not settle even after filing a car accident lawsuit, it may be necessary to prepare for trial and, ultimately, go to court. A car accident lawyer at The Flood Law Firm can assist you with all aspects of the lawsuit, from settlement negotiations to trial preparation and presenting the case at trial as needed.
The time it takes to resolve your claim depends on a number of different factors. The Flood Law Firm can provide you with knowledgeable guidance and support.
The Flood Law Firm handles car accident cases throughout Connecticut from offices in Middletown, Danbury, Waterbury, and Bridgeport.
There is no such thing as a “standard” timeline for resolving a car accident case. As a general rule, however, it can take anywhere from 6 months to more than a year after the accident to reach a settlement.
Multiple issues can make a fair settlement more or less difficult to obtain. These include:
You do not automatically have to file a lawsuit following a car accident. After evidence has been gathered and your attorney has made a determination as to damages, the first step is making a claim with the insurance company for the driver who caused the accident.
What typically ensues is a series of negotiations between your attorney and representatives for the insurer. If the insurance carrier is willing to be reasonable, your lawyer may be able to negotiate a fair settlement without having to sue. However, if the insurer will not negotiate or makes a low offer and refuses to budge, your attorney may recommend filing suit to show that you are serious about recovering the compensation you deserve. Negotiations can resume or continue prior to trial and even during trial.
It is also important to be aware of how much time you have to file a lawsuit after a car accident. A legal action to recover damages for personal injury in Connecticut must be brought within 2 years. This is known as the statute of limitations.
Entering into settlement negotiations with the insurance company is not the same thing as filing a lawsuit. For your case to be brought within the statute of limitations, you or your attorney must submit a summons and a complaint with the appropriate court no more than 2 years after the accident.
Anyone injured in a car accident would like to be paid sooner rather than later. You may be facing significant medical expenses, lost income from time you had to take off work, and other financial challenges. It is understandable why so many people who don’t consult a lawyer will jump at the settlement offered by an insurer—even when it is not in their best interest.
You should talk to a lawyer before accepting a car accident settlement. A knowledgeable attorney can determine whether the settlement is fair and if additional compensation may be recoverable through further negotiations or by filing a lawsuit.
This will likely lead to more time before you get a settlement. However, the wait is generally worth it if it means recovering more compensation for your losses.
In addition to consulting a lawyer, there are steps you can take both immediately following the car accident and in the course of your recovery to improve the likelihood of a fair and timely settlement. These include:
After a car accident, your injuries need to be promptly and accurately diagnosed. Complete medical records serve as important documentation in car accident lawsuits that can support your claim for damages.
Regardless of who is at fault, you need to report the accident to your insurer as soon as possible. Taking this step ensures that there is a record of the accident and allows you to make a claim under your own coverage while you are waiting for your case to settle.
All damages in a personal injury claim must be thoroughly documented. Bills, receipts, and other paperwork serve as evidence of your financial losses, which your attorney can draw upon to negotiate a settlement as well as draft the complaint if a car accident lawsuit needs to be filed.
Doctors and other medical providers may prescribe medications, physical therapy, psychological counseling, and other treatments to aid in your recovery from the car accident. It is important to follow your doctor’s recommendations. Your medical records will reflect the impact of your injuries and the care you require for recovery, which your attorney can use to argue for additional damages in a settlement.
Although it is in your best interest to have an attorney handle communications with the insurance company on your behalf, you need to be involved. You and your lawyer should discuss any settlement offers in detail to determine whether the offer meets your current and future needs.
Obtaining a fair settlement after a car accident is not always easy. Litigation may be required to get the result you deserve. This may involve filing a lawsuit, as well as taking your case to trial.
The Flood Law Firm advocates for clients who have been seriously injured or lost loved ones in car accidents. We are often able to achieve settlements in excess of what the insurance companies initially offer. Our attorneys also file lawsuits and take cases to court, frequently obtaining jury trial verdicts beyond what many other firms are able to reach. For a FREE consultation, call (860) 346-2695 today.
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