Boating accidents, car crashes, bicycle accidents, and getting hit by a car while walking in Bellingham – all of these accidents can cause serious injury. If you’ve been injured and believe someone else is at fault, there are Washington laws that can protect your assets so that your financial health is not wrecked as well. However, it’s an unfortunate fact that accidents are rarely straightforward enough to clearly process a claim from start to finish with the maximum benefit given to the victim. This is why personal injury lawyers are available for accident victims.
If you’re on this site, you are getting to know the ins and outs of personal injury law. You may be wondering, what exactly is a personal injury claim?
When one person is injured and someone else might be legally at fault for causing that injury, legal disputes often arise. In the legal field, these disputes are referred to as personal injury claims or torts. These types of claims arise whenever one person’s careless or deliberate conduct causes injury to someone else.
Typically, a personal injury claim begins when an accident victim or that person’s family member contacts a personal injury lawyer. Perhaps this person has already tried to work with the insurance companies to get the claim paid. Perhaps they’ve decided it’s wise to skip working with an insurance company’s representative who will use every available means to pay less money out on the claim. In any case, a personal injury claim can end a number of ways, including reaching a settlement with the insurer or other at-fault party, or taking the case all the way to trial.
This begs the question: how long will this process take?
Every case is different, and so the legal process for each case is also different. The length of time it will take for your Bellingham personal injury claim to finish will depend on many different factors, such as:
- Who, what, when, where and why the accident happened.
- Details and circumstances of the victim’s injuries, including where the injuries occurred, and how long the victim will need to receive treatment, as well as the severity of those treatments.
- How the insurer evaluates the case.
- Whether the parties agree as to fault (and here is where things can get very murky!)
- Whether the parties agree that the accident victim’s injuries were indeed caused by the accident.
- The length of time it takes to gather and go through the evidence needed for the claim. Medical records is a perfect example, and often it’s necessary to utilize the services of an expert witness.
- Whether the case settles out of court or needs a judge and jury to decide.
- And if the case goes to court, how crowded is the docket and schedule.
The short answer is, a personal injury claim generally can take anywhere from a few months to several years before its resolved. The best way to understand how your unique case will go is to talk to us here at Bill Coats Law. A lawyer here will take a look at your case to get an understanding of the facts and circumstances of your case, and be able to give you a fairly accurate assessment of what it would take to get a fair settlement. Remember, initial consultations are free and we don’t make a penny until your case settles. You have nothing to lose.