Probably one of the biggest misconceptions people have about handling a car accident case is that it takes years and years to settle. Typically, they don't take this long. The biggest factor in whether your case is going to settle quickly is how long it takes you to recover from your injuries.
Your lawyer is going to be relying on the medical records that your doctor creates about your medical condition, your treatment and your rehabilitation. This greatly effects the value of the case. So a lawyer can't begin to put a value on your case until you have completed all of your medical treatment and they have gotten the final evaluation report from your doctor.
Once your attorney has received all the medical records they need they will put together a settlement and demand package to talk to the insurance company about whether the case can be settled. Some factors that will effect how quickly this happens include the following:
- Is there an agreement that the other driver twas primarily at fault and you were not at fault? If there is a big disagreement about this it can slow things down.
- How long did your medical treatment take and what are the doctors saying about your future medical needs? And, what do they anticipate that will cost?
- How much does your attorney and you believe your case is worth and how much is the insurance company willing to pay? This could also slow things down if there is not an agreement on the specific amount or within a certain range.
Attorney Jim Dodson states that if your case does not involve surgery you could expect it to settle in about a year or a little bit longer. If there is surgery involved that could lengthen the process because of the recovery period.