We fervently hope that you’ve never had to deal with a car accident OR a settlement resulting from a car accident. But once you do, it’s a world of firsts and uncertainty.
What is normal?
What can I expect from my car accident settlement?
Do I need an injury lawyer?
What does the timeline look like to receive a settlement?
What can I expect from my insurance company, car repairs, and restitution? It’s an incredibly complicated process, and most people have never had to navigate it before.
Flickinger Sutterfield & Boulton have a mountain of experience when it comes to car accidents, insurance claims, and car accident settlements. We’ve helped hundreds of injured clients get the justice they deserve with a speedy and simplified settlement so that the nightmare can be over. Today we’re sharing what we’ve learned about the general process of a car accident settlement.
The Car Accident Settlement Process
- Letter of Demand. The first step is to submit your accident claim in a demand letter to your insurance company. Carefully review what your policy covers, then submit a letter including all of the details and an initial compensation demand (aim high to allow negotiation room).
- Negotiation & Mediation. Once your insurance company receives your demand letter, they’ll respond with an offer that is usually as low as possible. Review their response and begin the negotiation and mediation process by counter-offering and reiterating your case and needs.
- Settlement. Once both parties agree upon a settlement amount, papers will be drawn to complete the deal. You’ll need to sign an agreement that you will not file any additional claims, and that the money received is sufficient for your needs. Once the paperwork is completed, signed, and filed, you should get your check within a month.
Settlement Slow Downs
Unfortunately, this process is not always linear and there are many factors which can significantly slow your accident or injury claim with your insurance company. Obviously, you want the fastest resolution possible so long as the outcome is satisfactory, so carefully read these factors and call Flickinger Sutterfield & Boulton if you want to circumvent the roadblocks to your insurance settlement:
- Yourself vs. Lawyer. If it’s you filing the settlement and claims alone it can take much longer than if you rely on the expert help of a knowledgeable injury lawyer. On the other hand, using a lawyer may prolong the case to get you a higher settlement, so it depends on the case.
- Accident Complications. Simple accidents and at-fault drivers taking responsibility can make the case go much faster. More complicated or disputed accidents can take longer to investigate and sort out. The more complicated the situation – the longer the process.
- Severity. Minor injuries or damage will usually mean a faster case, where more serious injuries will require ongoing treatment and additional documentation that can make the case go more slowly.
- Lawsuits. If you aren’t going to settle out of court, you will usually be at the mercy of the court’s schedule. It could be days, weeks, or months for your accident lawsuit to be heard.
If you feel lost in the complications and intricacies of accident settlements, call Flickinger Sutterfield & Boulton. We can help you navigate the process and get more from your injury settlement.