Before you even begin to think of filing a car accident lawsuit, it is critical to understand how the process will unfold. This article discusses a common timeline for claims and lawsuits.
No two car accident cases are the same, but many follow a similar trajectory on the way to the courtroom. Some will take longer than others, but the process is generally the same:
- Medical Care
- Hire an attorney
- File a lawsuit
This is how each of these steps might unfold.
The moments, days, and months following a car accident are integral to your case, if you decide to file a car accident lawsuit. In Florida, the statute of limitations requires that a plaintiff must file a lawsuit within four years of the date of the accident. That might seem like a lot of time, but the longer you wait to start the process, the higher the likelihood that evidence will deteriorate or be lost.
Receive Medical Care for Your Injuries
Whether you feel like you have been injured or not, you should seek a medical evaluation as soon as possible after a car accident. Being in a car crash, even one that doesn’t feel serious, is a traumatic event for the body. Injuries can occur without your knowledge, not to mention that adrenaline tends to mask pain.
Hire an Attorney Before Filing a Car Accident Lawsuit
After you receive initial medical care, it’s time to talk to an attorney about your case. After you hire a lawyer, they will guide you through three stages:
For more information on these steps, keep reading below.
During discovery, both your attorney and the opposing attorney will take time to gather evidence. This stage is extremely important, and as mentioned above, the longer you wait to talk to an attorney, the harder it will be to gather essential evidence.
Here is how this part of the process might play out:
- Your attorney notifies the insurance company of an impending car accident lawsuit.
- They will then seek your medical records to show that the accident caused your injuries, and they will speak to your care providers to learn more about your recovery.
- If you have suffered financially, they will seek your financial records.
- They will also interview any witnesses available, as well as conduct your deposition to get your statement on the record.
Once your attorney has built a case, the negotiations can then begin. During this part of the process, each side will determine what value your case has. It is important to note that this step in the process usually takes place between one and two years after your accident.
When your attorney receives an offer, they will advise you whether it is fair.
File the Car Accident Lawsuit
If it is not a fair settlement, your attorney may file a lawsuit on your behalf. Should this happen, your attorney will continue to gather as much evidence as possible as well as remain in contact with the insurance provider’s legal team in case a new settlement can be reached. Otherwise, your lawsuit will go to court, which can take years to come to a conclusion.
Not Sure If You Should File a Car Accident Lawsuit?
Are you ready to pursue your case? Contact us today and set up an appointment to speak to an attorney. Call us at 1-800-24-7-CRASH or write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.