Car Accident Settlements – Chicago Car Accident Attorneys
How Long Will It Take To Receive a Settlement For My Car Accident Case?
There are many factors that must be taken into consideration such as: What happened in the accident? What is the nature of the injuries? What insurance company are we dealing with? There are many more questions that need to be taken into account. However, even in the most routine car accident cases, there are at least three things must happen.
The Client Finishes Treatment or Reaches Maximum Medical Improvement
First, the client has to either (1) fully recover and need no further treatment, or (2) reach maximum medical improvement, which means that while the client may need additional treatment, this is as good as the client is likely to get. If future surgery or other medical procedures have not yet been performed, an accident lawyer can ask a doctor to give an estimate of what the costs of the future treatment will cost. Doctors will usually honor such a request albeit for a rather large fee.
All of the Clients Medical Records, Bills and Wage Loss Information Have Been Obtained
If a case is going to be settled without a lawsuit for top value, an Illinois car accident lawyer will need to obtain all of the medical records, bills and wage loss information for the client. Even if treatment is complete, sometimes the medical facilities that we order records and bills from move slowly. It is not uncommon for one of these facilities to take a month or more to respond to our requests even though we are constantly calling. However, getting the records and bills are essential: for settlement before a lawsuit the accident claims are fought based on the client’s medical records. How these records reflect the injuries is – at this stage of the game – the most important variable the insurance companies use to determine value.
The Demand Package: Waiting for a Response
After a settlement demand letter is sent with all of the relevant medical records, bills, wage loss information and other information necessary to resolve the claim, it takes the insurance company time to evaluate the claim. It should not take more than a month for most insurance companies to evaluate a claim, but it often does, and your Chicago car accident lawyer needs to be following up with the insurance company to keep your case at on top of the pile.
If after negotiations your case does settle, your Chicago car accident lawyer needs to continue to nip at the insurance company’s heals to get you your money to you as soon as possible. Some insurance companies drag their feet after settlement has been reached. It is important that Chicago car accident lawyers stay on top of the insurance companies to get you your settlement check as soon as possible.
Don’t be too anxious to get your car accident case settled without knowing the extent of your injuries. Once your case is over, it’s over. For instance, let’s say you injured your back in a car accident. Anxious to get your case settled, you or your car accident lawyer accepts an offer from an insurance company that seems reasonable. A few months later, after more back pain, your doctor informs you that you need surgery. Now, you determine that the settlement you received hardly seems fair. Therefore, you call your car accident lawyer to re-open your case. Your lawyer will tell you, “Sorry. There’s nothing that can be done.”
Next, insurance companies can often sense weakness. If you are trying to get your car accident case settled shortly after an accident, you may be sending messages to the insurance company. One message you may be sending is that your injuries are minimal. After all, someone trying to settle their car accident case a couple of months after a car accident is obviously not very injured. Another message you may be sending to the insurance company evaluating your car accident claim is that you or your car accident attorney is desperate for money and will settle short of full value to get quick dollars. It’s not uncommon for our Chicago personal injury law firm to receive phone calls from our car accident clients during the holiday season looking to settle their car accident cases before settlement discussions are appropriate. As experienced Chicago car accident lawyers, we explain to our clients the reasons why their cases might not be in a position to settle, for full value that is. We explain that we would like to bring their car accident cases to conclusion sooner rather than later as well since we do not get paid until they do. We then go over our main goal which is to achieve a settlement that is full and fair. Sometimes the timing matters – don’t hesitate before calling a car and trucking accident lawyer in Chicago.
Contact Willens & Baez to Receive a Free Consultation from an Experienced Attorney
To discuss your personal injury, medical malpractice, car accident, wrongful death, or Illinois workers compensation case, call our Chicago Personal Injury Attorneys today at (312) 957-4166 to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney. Initially, we will listen to you and offer you guidance. We see this initial FREE consultation not only as a way for us to get to know you, but also for you to better understand who we are and what we can do, so you can feel comfortable making the decision as to which law firm to hire.
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