The amount of time to settlement of most personal injury claims depends mainly on the following two factors:
- How long it takes before you reach an end point in your medical recovery, and
- The amount of time it takes our opponent to make a reasonable settlement offer.
The medical evidence
So as to assess the extent of your injuries, I will arrange an independent medical examination.
It is unwise to conclude your claim until the full prognosis for your injuries is known. This is because if it later turns out that your condition is more serious than we thought, we cannot ask for more money.
This type of situation often arises in relation to back injury claims. The orthopaedic surgeon will usually estimate when your back pain will improve.
However, if your injuries do not settle down as expected, then an updated report will be needed, and this can delay your case.
The ‘reasonable offer’
These days, insurance companies are required by the court rules to consider all personal injury claims within a certain period of time.
However, there are still one or two insurance companies who refuse to consider your claim until we actually issue proceedings.
And despite litigation having commenced, reasonable offers might only start materialising once the case reaches the stage of ‘allocation’, or when a trial date has been fixed.
Faced with such delaying tactics, the best approach is to progress the case towards trial as swiftly as possible.
Trials involve substantial legal costs. Being faced with trial costs is often what it takes to convince the opponents to agree settlement terms.
To give you a rough idea
An entirely straightforward minor injury claim, where liability is admitted at an early stage will normally take