How long will my injury case take?

There are a variety of common questions asked by clients who I represent in their Maryland Injury Cases. In previous articles I’ve discussed the number one question asked, which is what is my accident case worth. The number two question is usually how long will my injury case take. This question is almost as tricky as the case value one, and equally difficult to answer in the early days and weeks of an accident case.

First of all, we’re dealing within injury cases here. These cases are valued, as noted in the previous article, based upon the injuries sustained and the recovery time required for those injuries, you’ll arrive at the baseline time required to resolve on of these cases. There are very few instances in a Maryland personal injury claim where it is appropriate to settle that claim prior to the claimant being completely finished with treatment for injuries. That being said, any discussion of the timeframe for resolving one of these starts with the treatment time for injuries.

Our office does most of the groundwork on these claims within the first days and weeks following the incident, and our being hired by a client. This includes contact with insurance companies, setting up of claims, requesting medical records, requesting additional documentation, etc. Most of this “heavy lifting” that sets the stage for the rest of the claim is done early on, and usually quite efficiently within our office.

Then we wait. We wait until our client has reached a point in their physical recovery process known as Maximum Medical Improvement, often referred to as MMI. This means that either the injured person is back to where they were pre-accident, or they’re at a point in which they’re as good as their going to get, and there is a permanent injury of some sort.

Once MMI is achieved, our office will collect the remaining medical bills and records we need to move onto the next phase of the claim, which would be preparing the demand. Usually we will have all of the bills and records for these claims within 2-4 weeks from the time a patient is discharged, but that varies depending on the medical providers involved.

The demand drafting process is somewhat quick within our office. Depending on the extent of the injuries, this may take a few hours, or a day to get ready. Then, we send it to the insurance company for the responsible party, and we’re in another waiting phase. Typically it takes between 4-6 weeks for most insurance companies to contact us with an offer to resolve these cases. Then, we contact our client to discuss the offer, and take it from there. More on the injury settlement process can be found here.

Then, we’ll either settle the case after a week or two of negotiation, or we’ll prepare to file suit in the matter. Each of these paths are unique to the individual case, and will be discussed in detail with our clients before any decisions are made.

If you’re interested in learning more about the value of your Maryland personal injury or auto accident case, or are concerned with how long it will take to resolve, contact my office as soon as possible (410) 885-6200 to schedule a free consultation with a lawyer.

 

Should you settle your own Accident Case?


Since opening my practice in Elkton, Maryland I have noticed a lot of differences with the way that many accident cases come to my office. Whether these are people injured in auto accidents in Elkton, Maryland or other parts of Cecil County, there is an abundance of individuals who do not come to the law office first. There are pros and cons to this, but my goal here isn’t to discuss those specifically, but merely illustrate the point that things are a little different here, as opposed to Baltimore City auto accident clients. Here, more than in the city, I am more often getting the question from potential clients “Should I hire a lawyer to handle my accident claim?”

It is very rare that a situation is such that you can appropriately handle an automobile accident case on your own. Quite frankly, insurance companies will not respect you, and will assume that you have no idea how to file a lawsuit and carry it out against their driver. They are also in the practice of thinking you’ll settle the case for far less than it’s actually worth, or attempting to convince you that an attorney and his or her fees are too high to make it worth using one of us. The fact of the matter really is, in most cases, there are a variety of ways that having an attorney will be more helpful, and result in more money in your pocket. Not only can we negotiate the true value of a claim, because most attorneys who hold themselves out to handle these types of claims have handled hundreds if not thousands of them, but we also know how to file a lawsuit and keep the insurance companies honest when we need to.

We also bring the added benefit of being able to negotiate other aspects of the claim, such as medical insurance liens, outstanding medical bills, or other things that will put more money in the client’s pocket.

I’ve recently had a number of clients who came to me merely because they felt like they were not getting a fair shake from the insurance company. So far, none of these varied clients have been wrong! Over my years of dealing with these situations, many times I’ve been able to put significantly more money in the client’s pocket(after lawyer’s fees and medical bills) than the insurance company was offering in the first place! If you’ve been trying to handle a Cecil County Auto Accident Case on your own, it might be time to pick up the phone and call me at (410) 885-6200 and discuss what’s going on in your case. You’re never under any obligation to hire me, and I only get paid when I collect money for you!