Jan 06 2023

Factors That Impact the Timeline of a Personal Injury Case

There are a few common questions that clients in personal injury cases often have for their attorneys or other professionals, and some of these tend to revolve around timelines. Clients naturally want do know how long a personal injury case will take to settle or otherwise be completed, and this is a realm that will depend on several specific factors.

At the offices of William Rawlings & Associates, we’re happy to assist with any personal injury case you’re involved in, providing high-quality attorney services for cases ranging from car and truck accidents to dog bite incidents, child injuries, malpractice suits and more. What are the key variables that will typically determine how long it takes to settle or otherwise resolve a given personal injury case? Here are several to be aware of.

factors timeline personal injury case

Type of Case

One of the first and most important factors that will often determine how long it takes to settle a personal injury case is the type of case in question. Certain cases may involve more complexity and/or require longer processes before they can be resolved, such as those involving medical malpractice or product liability issues.

For instance, if a medical malpractice case requires the examination of several documents, or if product liability needs to be proven by demonstrating a manufacturer’s defective product, these may take longer to resolve than cases that involve more straightforward matters. On the flip side, certain cases are relatively more straightforward and can often be resolved quite quickly.

Whether the Case is Settled

Another element that can influence how long it takes to settle a given personal injury case is whether or not the case will actually be settled. If both sides are able to agree on an out-of-court settlement, this could take anywhere from one to two months. However, if the parties decide against a settlement and the matter goes to court, then this process can take anywhere from one to three years, depending on the complexity of the case and several other factors.

Now, it’s not always in a client’s best interest to take a settlement – but the competition between wanting your just compensation and wanting the case to finish as quickly as possible can be tricky to navigate. For instance, many insurance companies will offer settlements early in the process, knowing that clients often have pressing bills that they need to pay.

However, it is important for clients to remember that an early settlement could be far less than what their case may actually be worth. Settling too quickly could also mean sacrificing certain rights or privileges that you would otherwise receive from pursuing the matter in court. This is where experienced legal counsel can play a major role in assisting clients with their cases.

Severity and Type of Injuries

For many personal injury cases, the severity of an individual’s injuries can also be a major factor in determining how long it takes to settle a case. Cases involving serious injuries will often require more extensive types of care and therapy – plus, they may involve longer recovery times. As such, these cases must be dealt with greater care and caution, which could lead to longer settlement times.

In addition, the types of injuries can also influence how long it takes to settle a case. For instance, if an injury is classified as “permanent” or “catastrophic” then this could lengthen the process considerably as these cases may require more extensive compensation and/or greater legal aid.

Who is At Fault

Liability is another key factor to consider when it comes to how long it takes to resolve a personal injury case. If the defendant is able to prove that they are not at fault for the accident, then this could significantly delay the settlement process. On the other hand, if liability can be established quickly and without dispute, then this could help speed up the process.

For instance, many motor vehicle accidents involve two drivers, each of whom may be partially at fault for the accident. In such cases, liability must be established before any settlement can take place – which could delay the process if both parties are unwilling to admit fault or accept responsibility.

Overall, there is no “one size fits all” answer when it comes to how long it takes to settle a personal injury case. The timeline for each case is highly dependent on several specific factors and should be discussed with experienced legal counsel before any decisions are made. Ultimately, the settlement process can often be lengthy – but working with the right professionals can ensure that you receive the compensation that you deserve.

For more on this, or to learn about any of our personal injury attorney services, speak to our team at the offices of William Rawlings & Associates today.