There are a few key aspects of a case that can impact how long it takes to close. First is the statute of limitations, which is the time frame the victim has to initiate their claim. Second is the duration of your medical recovery. Finally, consider the time it takes for any insurance company or lawyer to resolve their negotiations or take the case to trial. Unfortunately, there isn’t any guiding light on what to expect from any car accident injury case. You, however, can make a few choices and gain a bit of knowledge to get an estimated time frame for what it will take to settle your whiplash case.
Texas Statute of Limitations
Within Texas, or for any crash that happened in Texas, you have two years to file your lawsuit against the at-fault driver. But, Texas has a few other laws that impact this too. For example, their shared fault lawsuit might make it unreasonable to file a suit if you’re barely avoiding taking the fault. If you have 35% of the fault, then you might not have the ability to recover enough to make taking the case to court worthwhile. To that extent, you’ll want Houston, TX auto accident attorneys that are highly skilled in negotiations.
When working within the statute of limitations, you’ll notice that the two-year gap is to file a lawsuit. Ideally, you wouldn’t get that far because if you’re trying to settle your whiplash case, then the entire point is to avoid taking the case to course. That means that you should have your claim in the works well before that two-year deadline.
That two-year deadline for filing your case stands in the event that your negotiations have gone sour, and you need to move forward with a different legal option.
Careful with “Rushing” a Case Forward
As mentioned earlier, your medical recovery time and the time it takes for negotiations can substantially impact the duration of your claim staying open. There’s not much you can do to rush either of these steps in resolution, and if you try to, the consequences can be severe.
Don’t try to rush your medical recovery because it can lead to more damage that won’t fit into this case. If you force yourself to go back to work before you’re ready or to skip out on medical treatments because they’re keeping your case open, then you probably won’t fully heal. Lawyers will often encourage their clients to wait until they’re fully recovered to start settlement negotiations because then they have a set dollar value on your medical bills. It’s vital to do everything your doctor tells you, even if it delays closing your case.
Then there’s the aspect of rushing negotiations. Usually, negotiations are like playing chicken. The attorneys sit around and throw out numbers until finally, someone caves. Of course, these aren’t random numbers they come from well-thought-out valuations on your injury, time, economic and non-economic damages. It’s best to let your attorneys work in a way that they feel will produce the best result, even if that means biding your time.
Rely on a Car Wreck Attorney in Houston to Explain Time Estimates
For a quick case where you’ve already received clearance from your doctor to stop any treatment and return to work may last for a few weeks. Initially, the time frame will revolve around what works for both your attorney and the insurance company. But, if the case can’t reach a resolution in negotiations, the court system will set court dates that your lawyer can’t choose.
Now, if you have a complex case where you’ll have years of ongoing treatment, you can start building your case and entering into negotiations now. A car wreck attorney should carefully evaluate the numerous options available and identify when waiting for treatment to be done is riskier than moving forward at that time.
During your consultation, you should ask your lawyer how quickly they usually resolve cases like yours. Ideally, through negotiations for a fair settlement, you should be looking at a window of a few weeks to a few months, but it could always take longer.
Should You Involve an Accident Lawyer in Houston, TX?
Accident attorneys in Houston, TX, help whiplash victims all the time, our award-winning personal injury law firm takes it a step further. Our lawyers work with the victims throughout their recovery process to understand the full scope of their medical bills and expenses. It’s not entirely clear for many people who file a car claim how much they’ll face in medical expenses. Then, we aim to help you recover all losses, including non-economic losses that can come with whiplash.