Due to someone else’s negligence, personal injuries can happen and may occur at any time. After facing a personal injury, you’ll likely have many questions. For instance, you might be in a dilemma about how to file a personal injury lawsuit or how much time it will take to receive compensation.
When you are injured due to someone else’s recklessness, you should seek legal help. Filing a personal injury lawsuit may seem like a challenging and time-consuming task, but if you have a strong case, it is worth pursuing. By taking the right steps, you can increase your chances of obtaining the compensation you need.
What to expect when filing an injury claim?
Step 1: Help from a legal professional
When you are injured or experience catastrophic injuries including traumatic brain injury, broken bones, or soft tissue damage, your first step should be consulting an experienced Personal Injury Attorney. This will help you get a better idea of the situation and what you can expect from the claim process.
You and the attorney will discuss various points, including how the accident occurred and the cost of your medical treatment. Your injuries might limit your ability to work, so you may also discuss lost wages. All these primary parameters will help determine your possible compensation.
Step 2: Investigation of the Accident Scene
It is important to gather all the evidence from the scene of the incident. If there are any witnesses, then you must gather their contact details and other necessary information. You must also note the license plate number of the other vehicles involved in the accident.
You can also request the traffic footage, which can provide an exact scenario of how the accident happened and whose negligence caused the crash. You can even use the assistance of expert witnesses, who can help you recreate the accident scene.
Step 3: Filing a compensation claim
After following the above two steps, your attorney will demand financial assistance from the insurance companies. There may be a single person who is liable for your claim, or there could be multiple parties involved. If any of the liable parties purchased an insurance policy to cover injuries to others, then their insurance company will be financially responsible for your damages.
The demand letter will include all the evidence collected by you and your attorney, including photos of your injuries, proof gathered from the accident scene, and medical bill copies, as well as a detailed explanation of how the accident happened and why the other party is liable. You may also include complete information about your lost wages and the pain and suffering caused by your severe injuries. The demand letter will then request a specific amount of compensation to cover all economic and non-economic damages.
Step 4: Negotiation Process
After filing an injury claim, you will get feedback from the insurance company about the settlement demand. Insurance companies will typically offer as little as possible to prevent you from filing a lawsuit. Therefore, you must not sign any agreement or accept the offer right away.
You must have a careful look at the insurance policy and its limitations. Most importantly, you should discuss your offer with your legal expert. They can give you a better idea of how to proceed. If the offer is close to the amount mentioned in your demand, then it may be a good idea to agree.
If not, then you can again file a new claim with a new amount. This can be done multiple times. However, you must only accept the offer if it reimburses you for the full amount of your damages.
Step 5: Court Process begins
If you are unable to obtain reasonable compensation from the insurance company, you can begin the court process by filing a lawsuit. The court process can involve various stages including discovery, mediation, trial, and appeals.
In the discovery phase, more evidence is gathered and unknown facts are discovered. If the parties then believe the case can be resolved without going to trial, the mediation phase can take place before a trial is set. At mediation, both the parties and their legal representatives sit down with a mediator and try to resolve the case. If the parties mutually consent to an amount of compensation, then the case is resolved here. Otherwise, the trial process begins.
In the personal injury trial, the judge gives the final verdict for the case. The judge’s decision is considered final, and the court’s order must be followed by both parties. If you are not satisfied with the verdict, then you can file an appeal. This may increase your compensation.
The Law Offices of Greg Prosmushkin is a personal injury law firm. We help people injured in accidents get the compensation they deserve. We have successfully represented many clients in court and got them the money they deserved.