Suppose you have been injured in an accident. In that case, you probably wonder if it’s worth issuing a personal injury claim and how long a personal injury lawsuit takes. According to Pittsburgh Personal Injury Attorneys, most personal injury cases settle without filing a lawsuit in court.
A personal injury claim is worth it if you are not at fault. It might bring you financial compensation for your injuries, medical bills, lost wages, emotional trauma, property damage, and more.
Steps That You Should Take
Your personal injury attorney will prepare your case, gather evidence against the at-fault party, and prepare a demand package. Suppose the defendant and the insurance companies deny your claims. In that case, your personal injury lawyer will help you file a lawsuit against them. Here are the typical steps in a personal injury lawsuit.
Receiving Medical Treatment
The first step, regardless of your injuries, is to receive medical attention and treatment. This isn’t just pivotal to your health and well-being but will also serve later as evidence in your personal injury claim.
If you refuse medical treatment, the insurance adjuster or the jury might consider your injuries superficial.
Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney
After you are well enough, you should consult with a personal injury lawyer about your case. Some of the best law firms often offer free case evaluations to help their potential clients understand their options and whether or not it’s worth pursuing a case against the at-fault party.
Be sincere in your consultation, and ask as many questions as possible. If the personal injury attorney is genuinely interested in your well-being and is ready to fight for your case, hire them.
Good personal injury attorneys can help you receive the compensation you deserve, whereas fighting on your own might lead to little or no compensation. Taking inventory of out-of-pocket expenses, medical bills, and everything related to your medical treatment and skipped work days is essential. This is because it will be used in your personal injury claim.
Investigation, Negotiation & Personal Injury Lawsuit
Once you have teamed up with a personal injury lawyer, they will begin investigating your case. They will obtain photos of the accident scene, police reports, medical reports, and other vital information.
Once you have reached maximum medical improvement, your lawyer can make a demand package to the other side’s insurance company or attorney. This is done at this stage since this is when you can learn how much your case is worth.
If the other side doesn’t agree or settlement talks stall, you can file a lawsuit against the at-fault party. Depending on the complexity of your case, and injuries, it can take one to two years for your personal injury case to get to trial. However, very often, the at-fault party will resume settlement negotiations, and thus you might receive your compensation earlier.
Discovery Phase, Mediation & Negotiation
Suppose the defendant doesn’t resume settlement negotiations. In that case, the discovery phase begins when both parties investigate the other side’s legal claims and defenses, question one another, and bring witnesses.
The lawyer can initiate settlement talks once the discovery period ends. Still, suppose a settlement can’t be reached. In that case, the mediation procedure begins, where a third-party mediator will try to solve the case.
If mediation doesn’t work, your case will go to trial, which can last a day, a week, or longer based on the complexity of your case. This is where a jury or judge, depending on the state in which the trial occurs, will reach a final verdict.