It is very common for an injury victim to want to know how quickly their compensation claim will settle. They have just gone through a terrible event in their life, and they want to move on.
Sadly, the answer to that question is not a simple one. There is not a specific time frame for an injury claim to process.
On average, a claim takes about 15 to 18 months to complete. However, if it is an easy case with minor injuries, it could be completed in a few months. If it is a complex case with multiple and severe injuries, you could look at a few years before it is completed.
Your NJ personal injury attorney can give you an approximate timeline based on the facts of your case, but an exact time is not guaranteed.
Different Factors That Can Impact Length OF Compensation Claim
Every case is different, and that is why it is very hard to put an exact timeline on how long your case can take to complete. However, a few factors can increase the length of time it takes to come to a conclusion.
Complexity of Accident
The case can be prolonged if it is necessary to do a comprehensive investigation into the cause of the accident so that fault can be determined. This is not unusual in trucking accident claims when there is a potential for several responsible parties.
Severity of Injuries
You should never begin the negotiation process for your compensation claim until you have reached Maximum Medical Improvement(MMI). Severe or life-altering injuries may require extended medical care before the victim is able to reach MMI. Starting the negotiation process prior to receiving the MMI can dramatically reduce your compensation package.
Type of Injury Case
The type of injury claim will also impact the length of time that it takes to settle. For instance, a car accident or slip and fall event will move through the system much faster than medical malpractice or product liability case.
The willingness of Insurance Company to Offer a Fair Settlement
How willing the insurance company is to offer a fair settlement can have an impact on the length of time it takes to settle your claim. Your attorney is not going to accept an offer that is not in your best interest. If the insurance company does not stall negotiations by continuing to offer low-ball packages, the process will move faster.
If Your Case Goes to Trial
If you cannot reach an agreement with the insurance company, your attorney may have to take your case to trial. Going to trial can help you receive a much larger settlement, but it will also add a few years to the time it takes to close the case. Thankfully, only about 3 to 5 percent of all claims end up at trial.
A Few Tips To Keep The Case Moving
To ensure that your case moves through the process without stalling, you are encouraged to:
- Make all of your appointments with doctors on scheduled dates. Delaying treatment and rescheduling causes time to be extended.
- Submit requested paperwork in a timely manner.
- Show up for all appointments set by your attorney, and come prepared so that they do not have to be rescheduled.
Work closely with your attorney, and your case will process as quickly as possible.