Do Most Personal Injury Cases Settle Before A Trial?
While most personal injury cases do settle before trial, it can take years to take a case to trial. One reason why it can take a long to take a case to trial is that the insurance companies want to determine the nature of your injury claim, want to plan their defense and want to use that length of time as a negotiation/ settlement strategy. Another reason why it can take a long time to take a case to trial is that the courts in the New York City Metropolitan area are backlogged. There are shortages of judges and court personnel due to budget cuts and the judicial system moves very slowly.
Whether or not your case settles before trial has to do with many factors including who’s the insurance company for the defendant. Some insurance companies are known for settling early, some are known for settling on the eve of trial and some are known for rarely settling any cases.
The attorney’s background and record also matters. The more successful verdicts and settlements the attorney had, the more likely the insurance company would want to settle your case. In general, insurance companies tend to pay more money if the attorney representing you has a reputation for higher verdicts and settlements.
How To Handle It When The Other Party’s Insurance Adjuster Wants A Statement?
The injured party should never give a statement. People sometimes give statements because they think the insurance company is being “nice” when in fact the insurance adjuster is trying to obtain evidence to use against the injured party for settlement or trial purposes.
The insurance adjuster also might be recording or transcribing the conversation, which is why victims should never talk to the other party’s insurance company. It would only end up being used against them.
Insurance adjusters often promise early settlements but the downside is they offer something very small. The smart advice would be for the victim to never talk to the other side’s insurance adjuster and to retain a lawyer.
Is Filing A Claim A Smooth And Easy Process Or Is It A Fight Against The Insurance Company?
It is a fight against the insurance company. Insurance companies are businesses and they want to spend as little money as possible to settle claims.
Most cases require a lot of time, a lot of effort and significant expenditure of resources on the attorney’s part in order to get a favorable conclusion. That is why it is critical for an injury party to retain an attorney anytime they have a claim for personal injuries against an insurance company.
How Long Do Personal Injury Cases Typically Take To Be Resolved?
It depends on a variety of factors including how complicated the case is (for example medical malpractice cases tend to be more complicated than automobile cases), the jurisdiction where the case is venued (for example New York City Metro area cases take longer than the northern suburbs) and what the injured parties injuries are (generally speaking the cases with more significant injuries can take longer to resolve).
That being said, on average it usually takes two to three years to resolve a personal injury case from accident to settlement. Every case is different and injured parties should seek the advice of a lawyer to ask about their specific case.
For more information on Settling A Personal Injury Case, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling (914) 220-1088 today.
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