Personal injury claims cover a broad range of accidents and injuries. You might suffer a personal injury due to a car accident, a workplace accident or an incident in a public place, like a council park or public transport. In these cases, you might be eligible to claim compensation.
However, it can be frustrating waiting for your settlement to be resolved and get the funds you need to pay the bills while you recover. So it’s important to know how long do personal injury settlements take and what you can do to reduce the time frame.
How long does a personal injury claim take?
After you submit a personal injury claim, it can take anywhere from a few months to a few years to reach a settlement. The average is about 6 months to 1 year, but it’s different for every case.
It’s unusual for a personal injury settlement to be resolved quickly because there are many factors for both parties to consider.
If the other party accepts liability without question and the insurer agrees to a settlement offer, it could be settled quickly. But this is the exception rather than the rule.
Why do personal injury claims take so long?
Here are some reasons why these claims can take time:
Waiting for the injury to stabilise
Your injuries need to be considered ‘stable and stationary’ before a personal injury case can be settled. Once your injury has improved as much as it’s going to, a medical specialist can assess how much impact the injury will have on your life.
More serious or complex injury
The more serious or complex the injury, the longer it will take to stabilise and the longer your case may take.
If the other party refuses to admit responsibility for your injury, there may be some negotiation between your lawyer and the insurer. All parties must attend a compulsory settlement conference to try to negotiate a settlement.
Going to court
If the parties can’t reach an agreement through negotiation, you might need to go to court. This could blow out the time frame for settlement by up to 2 years.
If the personal injury claim is for a child, the court might want to wait until the child has finishing developing to see what impact the injuries will have on their life. Some cases are postponed until the child turns 18.
How to speed up the process
Generally, a personal injury claim’s time frame depends on the circumstances of the case. But there are some things you can do to prevent unnecessary delays:
- Submit all required documentation on time.
- Gather enough evidence to make your case.
- Engage a personal injury lawyer to work on your behalf.
- Give your lawyer as much detail as you can so they can find the best option for you.
Deciding to settle quickly
Many clients prefer to settle quickly and get what they can rather than wait for the process to be fully resolved. But it’s not always the right decision.
If you accept a lower offer early, you generally can’t request a higher amount later if things change (e.g. there are complications with your injury).
A personal injury case requires patience to get everything you’re entitled to.
How Main Lawyers can help
Now that you know the answer to the common question of how long do personal injury settlements take, it’s important to get an experienced personal injury lawyer on your side will give you the best chance of resolving your claim faster.
Get started by contacting us for a free, no-obligation chat to find out how we can help!