There is no way to predict how long your personal injury lawsuit might take in California. Some are resolved before a lawsuit is ever filed. Others could take years before they are finally resolved through a jury trial.
An attorney cannot give you an exact answer on how long your case will take, but they could provide you with an estimate. By carefully evaluating every aspect of your personal injury claim, a Los Angeles personal injury attorney can help you understand what to expect.
Factors that could delay your case
Different factors could impact how long your personal injury case might take. They vary from one case to another. What is important to remember is that your attorney will work to avoid delays throughout the process. Some of these factors include:
- Intentional delays. Insurance companies are known to delay injury settlements for as long as they can. Every day they go without paying compensation for your injuries is effectively another day of holding onto your compensation without owing you interest. Your attorney can take steps to fight back against stall tactics from the insurance companies.
- Unnecessary delays. Plaintiffs can keep their personal injury case moving, but not all attorneys are diligent. Ensure you select one who will never let your case languish.
- Serious injuries. If your injuries are severe, expect the case to take substantially longer. This is especially true if you require long-term care. You cannot resolve your injury case until you have reached maximum recovery.
- Large claims. The more compensation your claim is worth, the longer your case will likely take. Insurance companies are often keen on moving forward with minor injury claims, but they will take their time on more significant cases.
- Multiple parties. The more defendants who are involved in a case, the more complicated the litigation will become. Discovery and litigation can last much longer when multiple parties are involved.
- Disputed liability. The most likely cause for a case to go to trial is if the defendant disagrees that they were responsible for your injuries. Cases that go to trial take far longer to resolve than the average personal injury settlement.
The best way to resolve a personal injury case in the shortest amount of time is through a negotiated settlement. While settlements can happen at any point in the case, most of them occur early on in the process. A settlement could cut months or even years off a personal injury lawsuit.
That does not mean you should rush to accept the first personal injury or slip and fall settlement offered. Often, insurance companies will make lowball settlement offers immediately after an accident. They hope that you will accept a settlement offer before you realize what your case is worth.
For that reason, it is always best to have an attorney help you resolve your injury claim. Your settlement must take into account your needs for the rest of your life. You only get one chance to settle your claim, so you have to make the most of it.
Contact our team of Los Angeles personal injury lawyers
The attorneys of Salamati Law are ready to help you avoid delays and secure a fair settlement offer as soon as possible. We will ensure the insurance companies treat you fairly and are unsuccessful in their efforts to delay your settlement. Contact us for a free consultation to learn how we can help.