Each case is different. Generally, however, settlement negotiations will begin after you reach what doctors call “maximum medical improvement.” It is at this time that doctors ordinarily release their patients. We will gather your medical records and bills to present them to the insurance company with a settlement demand. The length of the negotiation process varies among insurance companies and according to the severity of your injuries. Cases involving relatively minor injuries are usually resolved within 30 days of making a settlement demand. Larger cases can take months to settle.
If it is necessary to file a lawsuit to protect your rights, it takes much longer to reach agreement. Delay is caused by a variety of factors:
- The litigation process itself requires a lengthy discovery period during which the sides exchange information
- Crowded court dockets
- Difficulty in obtaining medical documentation
- Difficulty in obtaining testimony from witnesses
These and other factors play a part in how quickly a case can be resolved. Taking a case to trial, in general, takes a long time. Settlement, mediation or arbitration may significantly speed up the resolution of a case.