Car accidents can severely impact your life. Not only are you suffering from physical and emotional injuries, but you are probably concerned about the financial strain.
The cost of medical bills and the expense of repairing your car can quickly pile up, especially if you are out of work due to your injuries.
Lost wages weigh heavily on many accident victims.
You should not face this difficult time on your own physically, mentally, or financially.
Many car accident victims are entitled to compensation or reimbursement for their losses.
If you decide to pursue a personal injury claim, you may wonder what the average car accident settlement time frame is.
The short answer is there is no exact timeframe. Every case is unique and involves its own facts and circumstances.
However, average ranges can provide some insight into an auto accident settlement timeline.
Our experienced auto accident lawyers will explain what you should know.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Car Accident Settlement?
The length of time that it will take to get a car accident settlement can vary. In short, accidents with minor injuries are likely to resolve more quickly than those with severe and complicated injuries.
Specifically, Texas insurance companies have:
- Fifteen business days to acknowledge the claim and send the policyholder pertinent paperwork and information,
- Fifteen business days to decide on the claim after receiving completed forms, and
- Five business days to make the final payment if the claim is approved and accepted by the claimant.
This is a tight timeframe and generally only applies if you choose to accept the first offer.
In New Mexico, insurance companies do not have a specific timeframe in which they must offer to settle a claim. Instead, the law requires only that they settle claims “reasonably promptly.”
Do Not Rush to Settlement
Understandably, as an accident victim with bills piling up, you want to see your case settle quickly. You are probably asking yourself, How long does a settlement take for a car accident?
Although it can be frustrating, it is important to remember it is not always best to rush a settlement.
Why? Because the insurance company wants you to resolve the claim quickly to limit the amount of money they have to pay.
Always remember the insurance adjuster is not on your side (even if they are your own insurance company).
Having a knowledgeable attorney on your side to negotiate is key to receiving the compensation you deserve.
Factors That Influence How Long a Settlement Takes
If you are wondering how long a settlement takes for a car accident, it is imperative to understand that many factors can influence the time it takes to settle your claim.
One of the most significant factors affecting a settlement timeframe is the extent of injuries and associated medical treatment.
It is essential to determine your “maximum medical improvement” (i.e., will you make a full recovery, 50% recovery, etc.) before settling your claim to ensure you are adequately compensated for any past or future medical care.
Some cases are clear-cut, while others are much more convoluted.
If it is immediately apparent who the liable party is, then your case is more likely to settle faster than a case in which it is unclear who the responsible party is.
The Insurance Company
Just as every plaintiff is unique, every insurance company operates a bit differently. Some insurance companies are quick to settle claims, while others take longer.
The best way to ensure you receive a speedy yet fair settlement is to hire a knowledgeable, skilled, and experienced personal injury attorney.
How Can an Attorney Help Speed Up my Auto Accident Settlement Timeline?
Even minor car accident claims can be challenging to navigate on your own. An attorney well-versed in personal injury law will know the steps to speed up your settlement while ensuring a fair recovery.
An attorney can:
- Negotiate swiftly with the insurance company,
- Ensure a thorough investigation,
- Expedite discovery by knowing precisely what to look for, and
- Push for the case to be heard in court if necessary,
Our car accident attorneys’ familiarity with the justice system can help you get the best possible outcome.
Why Is My Car Accident Settlement Taking So Long?
It is not uncommon for accident victims to become frustrated with the settlement process. It is important to remember that the legal system’s wheels turn slowly, but they turn.
Once all parties have signed the settlement agreement, you can generally expect your check in about 60 days.
The exact timeframe may be less or more, depending on the circumstances of the case. Sometimes, if a claim is particularly complex, it can take longer.
If you are concerned your settlement is taking a long time, don’t fret. Your attorney can quickly contact the defendant or insurance company to determine the status.
Contact Our New Mexico & Texas Car Accident Injury Attorneys
At Faddoul, Cluff, Hardy & Conaway, P.C., we understand the importance of getting your settlement check in your hands as soon as possible.
Whether you were injured in a car wreck in New Mexico or Texas, if you are considering pursuing legal action, we can help.
Our attorneys have over 65 years of combined experience expediting settlements and litigating cases when necessary.