When people think about a car accident lawsuit, they usually envision a tense courtroom, replete with a jury and reporters. This isn’t really how it works in the real world. In fact, very few car accident cases in Fayetteville ever reach the courtroom. This is because almost all of these lawsuits are settled long before trial.
One of the first things car accident victims ask their Fayetteville car accident lawyer is – how much is my case worth? No attorney can answer this question when they first meet with their client. Even after reviewing the case, it can be hard to say just how much it might be worth. Even if your case is worth a certain amount of money on paper, that doesn’t mean much. There’s no telling how much your case will actually settle for. Your Fayetteville car accident lawyer can’t really know this until they’ve talked to the other side.
Another question a lot of clients ask is – how long will it take for me to get my money? This is another question no responsible attorney would attempt to answer. Sure, they can estimate that it will take several months to a year to settle any car accident lawsuit. However, until they know what the defendant’s attorney position will be, they have no idea just how long it will take to settle your case.
How Long it Takes to Settle Your Case Depends on Whether You Need to File Legal Action
How long it takes to settle your car accident case will depend, largely, on whether you need to file suit in the first place. Just because your car insurance claim was denied doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll have to file a lawsuit. In fact, many Fayetteville car accident lawyers are able to settle your claim with the insurance company directly.
Why would your claim be denied if the insurance company intends on settling it later? Well, some of the reasons your insurance claim may be denied include:
- The policy isn’t valid or lapsed for non-payment
- The vehicle was not listed on the defendant’s insurance policy
- The insurance adjuster doesn’t believe you were injured
- They believe the accident was your fault
- They think you’re exaggerating your injuries
- You have a history of filing claims
- Your claim is very expensive and they think they can settle for less down the road
Depending on why it was denied, your attorney may have a good chance to settle it. If the policy was expired or canceled, there’s nothing your Fayetteville car accident lawyer can do. They’ll have no choice but to file suit. For the other reasons, however, your attorney can try to negotiate a settlement of your claim.
Almost all Car Accident Cases Do Settle Out of Court
The reason we said earlier that very few car accident cases end up in front of a jury is because it’s true. More than 95% of all car accident cases settle long before trial. Part of this is because nobody wants to go to trial. Both your attorney and the attorney for the other driver know this. Trials are expensive and time-consuming. They eat up money that can be used to settle your case.
The other reason so many cases settle is that judges want them to settle. Anyone who files a car accident lawsuit will have to go through something called mediation. Georgia recently adopted something called Alternate Dispute Resolution. This is basically a system where plaintiffs and defendants are encouraged to settle their cases outside the court. Judges would much rather see this happen than have to add another trial to his court docket.
If your case does settle, you’ll probably get a lot less than your total demand. Both sides have to be willing to compromise when it comes to resolving your case. This means that your lawsuit may be for $400,000. However, in order to settle the matter and get guaranteed money, you may have to accept less. A case like this would probably settle for somewhere near $250,000.
Contact an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer in Fayetteville Right Away
If you’re injured in a motor vehicle accident in Fayetteville, you need to call an experienced car accident lawyer. They can review your case and let you know what it may be worth. They can also give you a general idea of how long it will take to settle your case.
Call today and schedule your initial consultation. It’s absolutely free.