When you make a personal injury claim, you wouldn’t want it to drag on for months or years. You would want it to be quickly settled so that you can move on with life. While it is very possible to have your case settled quickly, it would come at a cost. You may have to accept less money than you actually deserve.
There are several reasons why a case may take too long to settle;
Where there is a problematic issue with the case– Two main factors which determine the value you will receive are liability (who caused you pain) and damages you have suffered.
When it is difficult to prove liability either due to contradicting witness statements or presence of multiple parties, then the insurer will most likely not present a reasonable settlement offer. If you are not happy with the personal injury settlement offer made, the case will then linger as your lawyer will try to fight to prove the liability of the defendant and things will stretch a lot further until the judge makes a ruling on the matter.
Furthermore, where there is difficulty in ascertaining the level of damages suffered or there is still uncertainty over the defendant’s negligence, then a reasonable settlement offer will not be brought by the insurer until it is proven beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant’s negligence is the cause of your injuries.
Where the case involves a lot of money– The insurer would want to be sure that they have done their due investigations before coughing out a large sum of money. They will have to be convinced that they don’t have a good defense to your claim and that your injuries are as severe as it has been said.
Sometimes however, insurers will deliberately delay settlement to see if the claimant will accept less money since they know that most claimants cannot wait very long for their settlement.
This is why it is important to get experienced lawyers who are very well versed in personal injury negotiation tactics in the UK so that you are not “shorted” on fair compensation.
When you are still receiving medical treatment– if you or your loved one who is injured is still receiving medical treatment, you may have to wait until you have reached a point of maximum medical improvement (MMI) from your injuries to get a settlement.
When you are still undergoing treatment, it may be difficult to know much will be enough for your future expected expenses and sometimes, the defendant may not want to be truthful on the exact amount.
How Long Does A Compensation Claim Take To Settle?
Generally, a compensation claim takes about 6months to 3years to settle. Several factors such as has been mentioned above determine how long it will take to be settled.
Usually, for cases that will go to a trial, it will take around 2 years to go from being filed in court to the trial. Bearing in mind that personal injury claims are not filed immediately after the accident occurs, it is safe to say that cases that go all the way to a trial could take 3 or more years to settle.
Sometimes, cases are resolved even before they are filed. For instance, a week or so after the victim is injured, an insurance adjuster from the defendant’s insurer will approach with an initial settlement offer which is made to look like a reasonable offer that will cover the victim’s losses. If the victim decides to accept the offer, the personal injury case can end in a matter of weeks while he or she will have to sign a release waiver that takes away their right to sue.
However, if the second settlement offer is rejected, the claimant will send a demand letter to the defendant and to his or her insurer stating what transpired, demanding compensation for the damages suffered and stating the victim’s intent to file a lawsuit if the compensation is not paid within a certain period of time.
If the defendant makes a compensation second offer which is deemed fair, the case can end before it is filed.
If the reverse is the case, a personal injury lawsuit will be initiated by filing a complaint in court and served on the defendants. This should be done before the statute of limitations has expired.
How Many Personal Injury Claims Go To Court?
Not many personal injury claims go to a trial. Statistics have shown that approximately only 2% of personal injury claims go to court. These usually involve cases that are very complex or where liability could not be resolved.
How Long Does It Take To Receive Settlement After The Case Has Been Resolved?
On the average, it can take up to six weeks to process the personal injury claims payouts after the case has been settled. A number of factors come into play here and this period can vary from one case to another.
The following has to happen before you receive your settlement cheque;
- Settling victim’s expenses: This largely depends on the nature of the claim. medical bills or other expenses incurred may have to be settled first. If the plaintiff has already paid for them, he will be reimbursed. The plaintiff’s solicitor will ensure that all invoices are up to date and ensure that each creditor is settled appropriately.
- Paying The Solicitor Fee: The lawyer will have to deduct the legal fees as agreed with the plaintiff as well as pay other legal expenses including court courts and filing fees.
- Victim Compensation Payout: After all bills and outstanding expenses have been settled, the plaintiff will be issued a cheque in the residual amount. This can be mailed or picked up at the law firm along with the final legal fee settlement and a copy of the final compensation agreement as signed by the plaintiff when the settlement negotiations were finalized.
No Win No Fee Personal Injury Solicitors
If you or your loved one has a personal injury lawsuit, it is advised that you meet expert personal injury solicitors who will insure a smooth personal injury claim settlement process so that the negotiation process doesn’t add an extra burden to you.
In the case of clinical negligence, our Medical Negligence Solicitors will assist you with your medical negligence claims. With our compensation calculator, we can give you an idea of how much you could likely receive for your claims.
Our personal injury solicitors are well versed in personal injury negotiation tactics in the UK and so you can be sure that you are in good hands. We undertake these claims under our no win no fee policy.
We therefore encourage you not to hesitate to reach out to us via our helplines to begin the claims process.