How Long Does a Personal Injury Lawsuit Take to Settle
The cases of personal injuries arise when someone gets injured resulted from the negligent or intentional acts. Talking about personal injuries, it is divided into two parts, i.e., physical injury and psychological injury. Physical injury can be raised due to the traffic accident, injury at work, or injury caused by other intentionally. Psychological injuries cause stress. If you are not getting proper treatment or vaccinations in hospital, then this can also be treated as the psychological and physical injury.
“On the other hand, serious personal injuries can result in very high costs. You may need immediate treatment for the injuries, but the treatment can be very expensive,” according to Tsion Chudnovsky, a Spanish speaking personal injury lawyer at Abogados de Accidentes. “U.S. tort laws give you the right to file claims for full compensation and register a case against the wrongdoer.”
For this, you may need to take help of a personal injury lawyer. The lawyer will help you to get the rights compensation that you deserve for your injury. The best personal injury attorney will help you in filing a personal injury lawsuit. There are some cases which are resolved in informal ways by settlement negotiations. If the case is a serious one, then that goes to trial. Generally, in the lawsuit, the person who suffers from the personal injury seeks a determination that the defendant has some legal faults and a determination of money which fair compensation for the injuries will be suffered.
What does the victim need to prove in Court?
The victim here must prove that he or she is innocent and the third party causes the injuries. The complainant must prove that the defendant owed a legal duty of care to the person suffers from injuries under the circumstances and also need to prove that the defendant has failed to fulfill legal duty by doing or not doing something that caused the victim to suffer damages and loss. For example, if you have faced a car accident happened due to the negligence of third party or the defendant, then you must have to prove that it was the fault of the defendant. You can file for a settlement or compensation.
Damages which can be considered as the personal injury
When you injured in an accident, you file a lawsuit for compensation. You are entitled to financial compensation for your injuries. The money is awarded for your pain and injuries. This is called as damages. As per the law, the defendant is responsible for paying damages to the plaintiff or the injured person, if the defendant is found guilty.
The common types of damages are compensatory damages which are paid to compensate an individual for loss, injury, or damages incurred from third party’s carelessness. In the field of personal injury, damages are awarded if there was a breach of wrong civil action. The applicant or the injured person get compensation based on the position of the damages.
However, in case of personal injury damages, it is divided into two categories, i.e., special damages and general damages.
Under the general damages, the injured party is compensated for their injuries by monetary aspects. General damages may include:
- Physical pain.
- Emotional suffering.
- Mental or physical impairment.
Here you must prove that these damages occurred as a result of the injury and not pee-existing conditions. After that only you will be entitled to get compensation.
Now, talking about special damages, the victim is compensated for the monetary losses suffered because of an injury caused by the third party. Monetary compensation can be awarded for many numbers of reasons. But some common reasons are:
- Lost earnings.
- Repairing or replacing property.
- Compensating for irreplaceable items.
- Covering extra costs associated with the injury.
In the case of repairing or replacing property and seeking compensation for any irreplaceable items, you must prove that your property was damaged in the accident or wrongful event caused by others. Otherwise, you may not ask for compensation.
Detail information about damages and compensation
Pain and Suffering:
You have the right to get compensation for your physical pain and mental anguish that you have suffered and will endure in the future because of your injury. Such damages also called as non-economical damages.
Medical expenses for treatment:
You have the right to receive compensation for all medical bills incurred in the treatment of injuries. You also can claim for the compensation for future medical treatment expenses.
Damages that lead to loss of earning:
You are also qualified to get monetary compensation for your loss of earning capacity due to injuries. Your earnings like lost wages or salaries, bonus, commissions and fringe benefits all are recoverable, and you can file a claim for this.
Loss of future is earning:
If you have lost your future earning capacity in an accident caused by the third party, you can file a claim to recover the value of your future earning capacity.
Damages lead to wrongful death:
Damages for wrongful death claims are available for your wife, parent, and child. The persons connected by blood or by marriage, who is depended upon the deceased, can ask for rightful recovery.
Its related to marks or scars caused by injury. You can file for compensation associated with deformity.
Injury leads to damage to the marital life:
Sometimes, serious injuries can damage the marital relationship. If such situation arises, you have right to recover for assistance, conjugal, loss of sexual relationship and affection.
Harm to the personal property:
For example, if you faced an auto accident and your vehicle gets damaged, you are entitled to recover the cost. If the vehicle is destroyed, you can ask for replacement cost. Apart from that, you may recover the cost of alternative transportation incurred while your vehicle is being repaired.
Where to file personal injury lawsuits and what are the after that?
Generally, all the personal injury lawsuits come under state court’s jurisdiction of the country, where the damages or injuries have occurred. If the parties in a personal injury case live in other states, then for such cases the personal injury lawsuits can be filed in the federal trial courts.
Here, the lawyer of the victim develops a legal complaint which will contain all the allegation and then register the case with the required court. After that, the lawyer gets a summon from the court where the case is registered. Then the lawyer gives a complaint, summons and a list of damages on the defendant. After that, the defendant will be given 30 days to submit the answer. If the defendant fails, the victim can seek a default judgment against the defendant.
However, if the defendant has submitted the answer, the attorney of both the parties, i.e., the victim and the defendant will start the further legal proceedings. Both the sides will be called for interrogation to know the facts about what happened, who is at fault and what is the measure of the damages. The lawyer of the defendant will be given the copies of the medical treatment bills or damages bill, and the lawyer will determine if the total cost is reasonable. Sometimes, the defendant’s attorney hires experts to evaluate the nature of the injury and the expert will give an opinion the amount is reasonable or not.
The personal injury attorney may hire accident investigator to determine how the events at issue unfolded. Another important factor is the deposition. The lawyers for both sides will interrogate the involved parties and witness. The recorded facts and information are transcribed. That information is transcribed and can be used in for trial.
Information that the attorney will need from you:
- The date of the accident.
- Contact details of any witnesses.
- All the information related with the personal inures that you have and medical diagnosis and what type of treatment you received.
- Whether you have any insurance policies for a legal procedure or not? Such insurance can reduce your legal fees or expenses.
- Some evidence which can prove your earning loss and damages.
- Insurance documents which can cover your losses like health insurance and vehicle insurance.
- Documents related to any previous claiming case.
Personal injury trial period
During the trial period, the judge will analyse the evidence and witness and will decide who is legally responsible for the injuries of the victim. Then, the victim will be given a chance to present the case, and the defendant can try to refute that case. The defendant can submit the proofs related to the case to prove his or her innocence. Sometimes, the situation can arise like the defendant will admit the liability but will not agree with the nature of injuries and necessity of the victim’s treatment. However, after both side’s arguments, the judge will determine who is guilty and will inform the amount of money or compensation a defendant must pay.
How long does a personal lawsuit take?
Well, the duration of the case can vary with the cases. It is not possible to give a perfect answer about how long the lawsuit will take. There are some cases which take at least a year from the date of filing the complaint to get to settle, and some may take around six months. So, it is quite unpredictable. However, a personal injury lawsuit can take 2 to 3 years to get settled.
Factors that play an important role in personal injury verdict
The important factor that can affect in determining the verdict of a personal injury lawsuit case it the jurisdiction. Each jurisdiction follows different laws which are based on:
- The process of fault determination.
- How is the level of harm evaluated?
- What kind of personal injury is the person suffering from?
Some jurisdictions follow unique laws in the determination of evidence that are admissible in the court.
Is it possible to resolve the personal injury case before the verdict?
Yes, there are some cases which can be settled before trial verdict. As per the record, most of the claims related to accidents do not move to trail round as they are resolved through a settlement, outside of the court. Some cases are adjudicated before the filing of the lawsuit. However, to settle a personal injury lawsuit, the victim must give up the right to ask for further claims against the party with whom the victim is settling in exchange of money paid by the party or by the insurance company.
How much compensation is the victim entitled to get?
The value of compensation depends on the damages that you have received from the personal injury. The personal accident attorney can help you to evaluate the value by examining your medical treatment and medical bills. Each personal injury cases is unique. You can’t just follow normal calculation procedure to evaluate the damage. The attorney considers facts and circumstances under which the damages have occurred and then determine the perfect value of your compensation.
To win the case, your attorney needs to develop an adequate and simple method to present your case before the jury. The attorney needs to explain the laws which are related to the case with sufficient evidence. Your injury attorney will try the best to prove that the defendants should be held liable and will offer compensation to the victim for the damages that the defendant has caused. Well, it may sound very simple but, the process is very complex and can be very lengthy.
Some attorney uses video and audio aids to assist the case at trial. It can strengthen the case. Nowadays, most of the judges prefer to go with audio and visual aids. Photos of the accident and videos of events help the judges to understand the issues. Don’t start the case with boring practices or monotonous questionnaires. Such method will not help you to prove your case.
The most important thing that your injury attorney should do above all is to give you a fair assessment of your situation. If the attorney doesn’t think that the case is strong enough to go to court, the attorney will inform you that. If your case is solid and you have the proper evidence, the lawyer will, and the case can be settled in few months.