As a personal injury law firm, we routinely are involved with settling personal injury claims involving a Charlotte Chiropractor. Quite often, an injured client has pain which can’t be addressed by a medical doctor. Often, the client is referred to a Chiropractor or physical therapist for treatment. Whether to be treated by a Charlotte Chiropractor is your choice. Ultimately, the goal is to restore you to good health, and quite often a Chiropractor can help. Below are some symptoms which a Chiropractor might be able to help you with, where your primary care physician may not be able to assist.

Headaches After A Car Accident

If you’ve been in a car accident, the impact from the accident can easily lead to concussions or head pain. While headaches may be a sign of a concussion, more often they are simply a side-effect of your body experiencing the impact of the accident. Misalignment of the neck or spine from the car accident can leave you with chronic headaches. A Charlotte Chiropractor can present you with a plan for treatment which ultimately re-aligns the neck and spine, improves blood flow and oxygen to the head, and decreases headaches. If you have Medical Payments coverage on your auto policy, you may be able to pay for your treatment by accessing that coverage.

Limited Range Of Motion

So many car accident clients and slip and fall clients feel OK the day of the accident. Perhaps adrenaline prevents them from feeling pain, or a desire to simply be OK fuels the message to the brain that there is no injury. A few days after their accident, they are hit with the reality that they are injured and need treatment. Quite often, a limited range of motion is one of the obvious signs that things are not right. While a primary care physician can provide medicine to manage pain, and x-rays and MRIs can confirm or dispel injuries, a Charlotte Chiropractor can offer treatment to restore your range of motion. Realigning bones and joints relieves pain and restores range of motion.

Chiropractic Treatment After A Car Accident

Generally, seeking Chiropractic treatment after a car accident or slip and fall injury is a smart idea. The injuries we sustain in an impactful accident are not always obvious to us, and receiving treatment early can make the difference between a full recovery and something less than a full recovery. Most Chiropractic treatment is of a non-invasive nature, and reduces your pain without the need for drugs. In many instances, your Chiropractic treatment can be paid for from your personal injury claim—this is something you can discuss with your Chiropractor at your initial consultation. In addition to a successful treatment plan, your Chiropractor will provide detailed notes and records surrounding your treatment, which will help your personal injury attorney build your case for economic recovery. Quite often, the quality of the Chiropractor’s records and notes makes all the difference for you.

Speak With An Attorney Today

If you’ve been injured in an accident, you deserve to understand your rights. If you’d like to speak with an attorney today, please call 704.749.7747 or click here for a FREE CONSULTATION. We do not have any affiliation with Chiropractor’s offices, but we can certainly recommend one if you do not have a Chiropractor in the Charlotte area with which you are familiar. We know you have choices. We hope you choose to Recover With Us.

In the world of Personal Injury, most accidents result in soft tissue injuries. Among Charlotte personal injury lawyers, these are commonly referred to as MIST (Minor Injury Soft Tissue) cases. The truth is, a soft tissue injury can result in a great deal of pain and suffering, combined with months of rehabilitation. Furthermore, lingering pain is often a part of life for victims of soft tissue injuries. So, how are these injuries compensated for in the personal injury setting?

Working Without A Personal Injury Attorney

While there are variations, if you choose to work without a personal injury attorney on a soft tissue injury settlement, you will probably be offered your medical bills plus roughly $750.00 for pain and suffering. Each case is unique of course. However, insurance companies often group soft tissue injuries together. We receive calls in our office every day from individuals who have tried to settle without a lawyer and this is typically what they are being offered.

Calculating The Value Of The Injury

Any personal injury calculator you find online is doomed to reduce your unique situation to a logarithm or a generic calculation. We have found that the value of each claim depends on the specifics of the injury, the facts leading up to the injury, and the individual involved. Here are a few examples, which we believe shed light on the difference between numerous soft tissue injury settlements:

Example 1: The Pregnant Passenger–This individual suffers a soft tissue injury as a result of being a passenger in a vehicle. She is pregnant at the time and as a result can’t take pain medication to alleviate the pain from the accident. Physical therapy is taxing on her because she is pregnant. She has no lost wages because she was a stay at home mom; however, she was unable to perform her household duties during recovery.

Example 2: The High School Driver–This individual suffers a soft tissue injury as a result of a car accident which was not his fault. He successfully completes physical therapy and chiropractic treatment; however, he misses his senior year of track and field. He was expected to set a school and county record in the 1600m that year, but because of the accident never got a chance to do so. He has some lost wages from a part-time job he worked to help his family, and because of his inability to contribute the family was evicted from their apartment.

Example 3: The Autistic Child–This child suffers a soft tissue injury as a passenger in a car accident. In addition to the treatment the other two individuals above needed, she continues to suffer PTSD from the accident. Her therapist does not know how much more treatment she will need. The child’s mother indicates even months after the accident the child still suffers routine nightmares from re-living the accident in her mind.

Convincing An Insurance Adjuster Of Value

Your personal injury lawyer’s goal is to get you a fair settlement. While there are numerous ways to define this, quite often the lawyer will strive to obtain the highest offer and help you decide whether to accept that offer. The following factors are typically relevant to the insurance adjuster when deciding the value of your claim:

Appropriate Treatment For The Injury–Adjusters will refuse to give ‘value’ when they perceive the client has over-treated for the injury in an attempt to create a more valuable claim.

What Would A Jury Do—While neither the adjuster or the personal injury lawyer truly know how a jury would value the case, they can make their best guess. If the plaintiff is a likeable and sympathetic individual, it helps. If there is an argument that the injured party contributed in some way to the accident, it hurts. Insurance adjusters will adjust their offer up or down depending upon their perception of how the case would ‘appear’ to a jury.

Causation—Quite often insurance adjusters raise the issue of Causation in evaluating a claim. If the car accident occurs on July 1st and you don’t receive treatment until September 15th, you can expect some push-back from the adjuster. They may even ask if perhaps another injury occurred between July 1st and September 15th. Additionally, minor accidents typically don’t give rise to major injuries. There are exceptions, but adjusters are always looking for a way to discount the injury.

Special Damages—As outlined in the examples above, sometimes there are special damages which change the value of the claim. Lost wages, missed social occasions (Weddings, Graduations, etc.) all contribute to the value of the claim. These are also appealing to a jury as they humanize your client and remind them the accident had ramifications beyond the medical records.

Speak With A Personal Injury Lawyer

Speaking with a personal injury lawyer is easy. We are accustomed to listening to your story, asking a few questions, and helping you understand your options. Phone consultations are free and you should take advantage of the opportunity to speak with a lawyer. You can call us at 704.749.7747 or click HERE to request a call from us. We know you have options. We hope you choose to Recover With Us.

We have settled several personal injury claims involving fractured or broken legs. Some of these claims involved slip and fall injuries, and others involve car accidents. Depending upon the facts surrounding an injury, you can achieve dramatically different results. This is why working with a Charlotte personal injury lawyer is an important part of your case.

How Do You Break Your Leg In A Car Accident

It may seem odd to break your leg or ankle in a car accident. First, you generally place your foot on the brake at the time of impact. This is simply instinct. Second, your leg tends to be in a locked position when engaged with the brake. Finally, due to the impact of the car accident, many victims find all their weights comes to bear on the leg engaged with the brake pedal. The force pushing through the leg causes the break or fracture.

What Types Of Breaks Occur In A Car Accident

You may fracture or break your tibia or fibula in a car accident. These are the bones in the lower leg. You might also suffer a torn meniscus or ACL injury, though these are more common in slip and fall injuries. A broken thigh bone or femur is another common injury due to impact from car accidents.

The Value Of Your Broken Bone Claim

As mentioned before, depending upon the facts surrounding your injury, the value of your claim may differ. If the insurance company defending the other driver believes the accident was partly your fault, they may argue for less than 100% value to be paid to you as part of a personal injury settlement. This happens more commonly when the impact is not due to rear-end impact. Additionally, if you suffer a broken bone in a slip and fall injury, you will find the first line of defense from the adjuster will be Contributory Negligence. Essentially, they will argue you weren’t watching where you were going, or were wearing the wrong type of shoes. Their offer to settle will be reduced, based on these facts.

If your injury gives rise to lost wages or special damages, the value of your claim will also be affected. Your personal injury lawyer can help you verify lost wages and defend your right to be compensated for lost wages. If you are self-employed, you’ll find unique challenges when presenting lost wages to insurance adjusters.

The Importance Of Working With A Lawyer

Not every personal injury claim requires the help of a personal injury lawyer. There are times when using a personal injury lawyer might out-weigh the benefits. In our experience, we are happy to give you advice on how to settle those claims on your own. However, the vast majority of clients find they get better results with the help of a personal injury lawyer. There’s no cost to hire our firm, and we don’t get paid unless you get paid.

Talk To A Charlotte Personal Injury Lawyer Today

Call 704.749.7747 today to speak with a Charlotte personal injury lawyer. Or, click HERE to request a call from us. Phone consultations are free. We know you have choices, and we hope you choose to Recover With Us.

If you’re searching for a “Personal injury lawyer near me,” most likely you’ve been in a car accident or had a slip and fall at a grocery store or retail store. Finally, you may need to speak with someone regarding Workers’ Compensation. The Layton Law Firm’s office is in Charlotte, North Carolina and we handle personal injury claims across the state of North Carolina. Quite often, we can come to you, to sign paperwork.

After your accident, establishing a relationship quickly with a personal injury lawyer is important. Your personal injury lawyer will notify the insurance company that you are represented, and help you take next steps to preserve your rights.

Personal Injury Free Consultation

One way to get information quickly is with a personal injury free consultation. This can be done over the telephone. During this call you’ll speak directly with a Charlotte personal injury lawyer. First you’ll be given a chance to tell your story. Second, the lawyer will ask a few questions to help clarify the facts. Finally, the lawyer will try to advise you as to whether you have a personal injury claim worth pursuing.

If you decide with the attorney that you would like to pursue your claim, an in-person meeting can be arranged quickly after the phone consultation. In many cases, we are available to meet you at a location of your choosing to further discuss your case. Getting to know one another in person is important because in many cases you will be working with your personal injury lawyer for a long time.

Personal Injury Lawyer Fee Agreements

If you do move forward with representation by a personal injury lawyer, you’ll find that most personal injury lawyer fee agreements are written in your favor. Generally, you do not owe the personal injury lawyer or law firm anything unless they are able to obtain a settlement or jury verdict for you. If your personal injury lawyer does obtain a settlement for you, the standard fee is one third of the total settlement.

Your personal injury lawyer’s fee agreement should also mention any costs associated with obtaining records and negotiating medical bills on your behalf. Lastly, the agreement should address Medical Payments claims. You should fully review the agreement prior to signing it, and ask questions of the personal injury lawyer about any language in the agreement which is unclear to you.

If you searched for “Personal injury lawyer near me,” we are glad you found this article, and we would love to speak with you. The call is free, and helping individuals understand their options is part of our job.

Speak With A Personal Injury Lawyer Today

Whether clients are searching for a “Personal injury lawyer near me” or simply searching for a personal injury lawyer who can answer some questions, we are here to help.

It’s easy to get started. Simply call 704.749.7747 to speak with a personal injury lawyer today, or click HERE to request a call. You will be contacted directly by a personal injury lawyer, and by the end of the call you should understand your options. We know you have choices. We hope you choose to Recover With Us.

If you have a minor child injured in North Carolina, you may want to speak to a Child Injury Lawyer in Charlotte, NC. When a child is injured in a pedestrian accident, a slip and fall, or a car accident, you may be able to recover from the at-fault party.

What Makes A Good Child Injury Lawyer?

Generally, a personal injury law firm that handles claims on behalf of adults is competent to handle claims for children or minors. We have found over the years that the ability to connect with the child is a critical element to successfully negotiating personal injury claims involving children. Quite often, the child’s story or version of the facts may change, because their memory is different from the memory of adults. Your personal injury attorney will be able to assist in helping the child clearly remember the facts, without attempting to change or distort them.

Connecting with a minor or a child is a critical part of a healthy attorney-client relationship. While a parent or a Guardian Ad Litem will ultimately represent the child’s best interests, the child’s interaction with the law firm should help the child feel comfortable and protected. Great personal injury attorneys understand that a different set of communication skills is necessary to accomplish these tasks when a child is involved.

Will We Have To File A Lawsuit For A Minor?

Some claims settle without the need for a lawsuit; however, if the claim is to be settled for more than $5,000.00, the insurance company will typically require court approval. The reason for doing so arises out of a fear that when the child reaches the age of majority, they could argue that the insurance company treated them unfairly. By requiring court approval for the settlement, the insurance company is protected. Additionally, parents are protected in this environment as well. If you reach a settlement agreement prior to filing the lawsuit, the lawsuit is typically referred to as a “Friendly Lawsuit” and will not involve depositions, or having the child take the witness stand. The parties are simply asking for court approval for the settlement amount.

Should We Speak With A Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney?

If your minor child has been injured and you believe another party may be at fault, you should speak with a child injury lawyer in Charlotte, NC. The call is known as a consultation, and it is free. Our goal is to provide you with advice and to help you understand your options. You can call us at 704.749.7747 or click HERE to request a phone call. We know you have options. We hope you choose to Recover With Us.

Children under the age of 18 are protected in North Carolina and offered the same compensation for personal injuries as adults. A child under the age of 18 is typically referred to as a Minor, but the two terms are interchangeable for this article about personal injury claims involving children.

Personal Injury Claims Involving Children Or Minors

Children are often involved in the same type of accidents as adults. While children may not be driving an automobile, they are often injured as passengers. Pedestrian injuries involving minors are also very common. Our firm has handled several pedestrian claims for minors over the years. Lastly, a child can sustain an injury from a slip and fall accident in a grocery store or retail store much the same way as an adult can, and with similar injuries.

What Is A Fair Settlement For A Child?

A child’s settlement will be based upon primarily the same factors as a settlement for an adult. In personal injury claims involving children, the cost of medical treatment will be considered. Pain and suffering will also be taken into account. To the extent there is a permanent disability resulting from the injury, a child will suffer that disability for a greater number of years than an adult, and that will also be considered.

Does The Settlement Need Court Approval?

Many settlements for personal injury claims involving children or minors can be handled without court approval. A parent or guardian must consent to the settlement amount, and the funds will be delivered to the parent or guardian. Whether a settlement for a minor needs court approval is often determined by the insurance company authorizing the settlement. The primary reason an insurance company would demand court approval for a minor settlement is a fear of the minor later coming back to claim the settlement was no a fair settlement.

Does A Lawsuit Need To Be Filed?

If court approval is required by the insurance company then yes, a lawsuit will need to be filed and a Guardian Ad Litem appointed. This is usually a parent, but is essentially someone to represent the child’s best interests. While a lawsuit does need to be filed, this is often referred to as a “Friendly” lawsuit. It is one in which the parties have already agreed to the settlement amount, and they are simply seeking court approval for it. The court will be sure that the settlement is fair, all things considered. The court will probably also hold the funds in trust for the child or a separate trust will be set up for the child, to be delivered to the child upon reaching adulthood.

Speak With An Attorney Today

If you are the parent or guardian of a minor child and would like to speak with a Charlotte personal injury attorney about their injury, we’re here to help. Consultations are done by phone or in person, and are absolutely free. Call 704.749.7747 or click HERE to request a call from us. We hope you choose to Recover With Us.

We have found that our personal injury clients simply want to be treated fairly by insurance companies. Deciding what is fair treatment can be a difficult proposition. The definition of a fair settlement changes depending upon the facts surrounding the accident. Lastly, because each case is unique, hiring a personal injury lawyer to assist you can make all the difference. While settling your claim without a personal injury lawyer is possible, we have found clients receive better settlements with the help of an attorney.

How Is My Settlement Calculated?

A NC personal injury calculator can be quite misleading. Most personal injury settlements are based upon a combination of compensation for Medical Bills, Lost Wages, Pain and Suffering, and Special Damages. Because the facts surrounding each accident are different, these calculations may be adjusted in numerous ways. For instance, the same injuries sustained in a rear-end collision may receive a higher settlement than those sustained in a slip and fall accident. The reason for this is the insurance company defending the case may believe you contributed to the slip and fall injury, and will discount the settlement accordingly. This is the concept of Contributory Negligence, and it can result in no recovery at all.

Will I Receive A Breakdown Of My Settlement Calculations?

Generally, no. Your personal injury lawyer will submit a detailed demand package which sets out a theory of liability, medical treatment, and damages. That demand package will include specific amounts for medical bills, lost wages, and any additional damages. However, the insurance company’s offer of settlement will typically be a lump sum amount. To help you understand the settlement offer, we will show you how your personal injury settlement proceeds will be applied to your case, and show you a final amount which you will receive.

While some clients desire to know specifically how much the insurance company is allotting for medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering, the easiest way to think about your settlement is in terms of how much you will receive after payments to all parties have been made. You should know this amount prior to accepting your personal injury settlement. This is generally presented to you by your personal injury lawyer in the form of a Settlement Statement.

Is There An Online NC Personal Injury Calculator?

If you find an online personal injury calculator, you should be weary of it. The value of your settlement will depend upon so many very specific factors, and a calculator simply can’t account for all of them. If each claim was exactly alike, the need for representation by a NC personal injury lawyer would not be as important. Because each claim is unique, the expertise your personal injury lawyer has will increase the value of your claim as the lawyer argues the value of your claim with the insurance adjuster.

What Factors Will My Attorney Argue About With The Adjuster?

First, your attorney must put forth a theory of liability to establish the other party was at fault. If you were rear-ended, this is admittedly easier in North Carolina. In a multiple vehicle “pile up”, this task becomes much more difficult. The same is true of a slip and fall in a grocery store or retail store. The insurance adjuster will argue, for instance, that you contributed to the vehicle accident, or that you contributed to the slip and fall in some manner. They will use this theory to de-value your claim, no matter what the injuries were.

Successful arguments related to the following items can make all the difference:

  • Lost Wages – Your attorney will establish you actually lost wages due to the accident. We negotiate lost wages where adjusters believe the injured party should have returned to work more quickly.
  • Medical Bills—Quite often the insurance adjuster will argue the injured party received ‘excessive treatment’ and will not want to pay for all of it. Your personal injury lawyer will examine the treatment notes and defend the treatment you received as necessary and ordinary for the injuries.
  • Pain and Suffering—Your personal injury attorney will tell the story surrounding your injury. This humanizes you in the eyes of the insurance adjuster and when done convincingly, increases the value of your claim.
  • Special Damages—If the injury you sustained led to missing out on important life events (A wedding, or a graduation, for example), the attorney will put the adjuster on notice of those Special Damages and argue for compensation related to them.
  • Threat of Lawsuit—Perhaps one of the strongest reasons for employing a personal injury lawyer is that the insurance company sees the case differently when negotiating with a lawyer. They know if a resolution can’t be reached, they face having to defend a lawsuit which could cost them considerably.

What Are My Next Steps

If you’ve been injured in an accident of any type, you should speak with a NC personal injury lawyer. Our firm—and most firms—offer free consultations by phone or in person. There is no commitment to hire us, and the goal is to help you understand your options. You can call us at 704.749.7747 or click HERE to request a phone call. We know you have choices. We hope you choose to Recover With Us.

Car accidents and slip and fall accidents can turn your life upside down in an instant. Some injured individuals assume they automatically have a personal injury claim against the driver who hit them. Some injured individuals think the grocery store where they slipped and fell should always compensate them. Whether you have a personal injury claim or not depends on the facts.

Did The Other Party Owe You A Duty?

In order for someone to be responsible for your injury they must first owe you a duty. Typically, that duty is one of Reasonable Care in the situation. A grocery store owes its customers a safe environment, free from hazards. Another driver owes the drivers around them. Namely, the duty to avoid causing injury to others.

Did The Other Party Breach Their Duty?

Once it is determined a duty was owed, you must next establish that duty was breached. In a grocery store slip and fall, an example would be if a store left standing water on the floor for an hour while shoppers were using the store. Or, if a grocery store was on notice that a cooler was leaking and failed to fix that cooler. If the water from the cooler leaked onto the floor, the duty was breached.

If another driver drives excessively fast, or leads police on a high speed chase and causes an injury to you, there is a good argument that driver has breached their duty to you. Generally, in North Carolina, if you rear-end another driver, you will be judged to have breached your duty to them. Therefore, a failure to leave enough stopping distance is a breach of duty.

Did The Other Party’s Actions Cause Your Injury?

Many times, when negotiating a personal injury claim, insurance companies want to argue over pre-existing injuries. If you fall in the grocery store and require surgery, the store wants to know if you already needed the surgery, prior to the date of the fall. If your primary complaint is back and neck problems, the store will want to know if you have a history of neck and back problems. Essentially, the at fault party is only responsible for the injury they caused—not for any injury you already had, or for any injury another party caused.

Do You Have Damages?

There are many times where a duty is owed, the duty is breached, but there are no damages. For instance, if someone is rear-ended by a vehicle traveling at 5mph. While technically speaking there was an accident, you would have a difficult time proving a bodily injury came about as a direct result of the injury.

Speak With A Charlotte Personal Injury Lawyer Today

If you’ve been in an auto accident, or a grocery store flip and fall, you may have a personal injury claim. Call us today at 704.749.7747 to discuss your personal injury claim. We’re here to help you understand the options and you don’t owe us anything unless we reach a settlement for you. Or, if you’d like to schedule a free consultation by email, click HERE and we’ll reach out to you to set up a time to talk. We know you have choices. We hope you choose to Recover With Us.

Don’t settle your personal injury claim without a personal injury attorney. You may be skeptical hearing this from a Charlotte personal injury lawyer or law firm, and we understand that. To be clear, it doesn’t matter to us whether you use our law firm or another firm—what’s important is that you get the representation you need and deserve when negotiating your personal injury settlement. This article outlines a few reasons why it’s almost always better to hire a personal injury lawyer to help with your claim.

The Personal Injury Contingency Fee

The personal injury contingency fee is described many ways. Most often, you hear it described by attorneys as “We don’t get paid unless you get paid”. What we like so much about the contingency fee is that we feel it keeps personal injury lawyers honest. If an attorney is getting paid by the hour to work on your case, they might work on your case even if they don’t believe you’ll win anything. But, when the attorney is only getting paid if they’re able to get a settlement or jury verdict for you, it enables you to trust what the lawyer tells you about your case. If the lawyer wants your case and is willing to work on it for free (potentially), it tell you the lawyer has faith in the case and feels they can help you prevail against the insurance company.

Your Personal Injury Attorney Will Help Maximize Your Settlement

How do you know when you’ve reached a “top offer” from an insurance company? What is a fair settlement? The honest answer is you will never truly know. But, when you work with a personal injury attorney, the attorney takes on the negotiation process for you. Without an attorney, you’ll find insurance adjusters de-value your case by presenting facts to you in the light most favorable to their side. Lawyers are accustomed to these arguments and have answers which help to neutralize the argument and focus on the true value of the claim or case.

After you’ve reached the top offer from the insurance company, your personal injury lawyer will typically be able to negotiate down some of your medical billing, which increases the amount of money you receive from the settlement. This includes negotiating health insurance ERISA liens, negotiating hospital billing, and even negotiating with Medicaid and Medicare liens where possible. These negotiations make a meaningful difference in your settlement amount.

Your Lawyer Protects Your Rights

When you reach a settlement with an insurance company, the company gives you the settlement check in exchange for a full release of liability from you. This means that all claims arising from the accident or injury are settled. The release is full of language with legal implications which can affect you if you need future treatment or if you’re a Medicaid or Medicare recipient. Additionally, the release is final as to all other claims related to the incident. It’s extremely important to have an experienced personal injury lawyer review this documentation and explain it to you before you sign it.

Your Personal Injury Lawyer Has Experience

Personal injury lawyers settle claims routinely. Over the course of several years, they understand the value of claims. This experience enables them not only to maximize the value of your claim, but also enables them to assess when they’ve received a fair offer. The attorney can compare the offer on your settlement to similar claims they’ve settled or taken in front of a jury in the past. Most personal injury attorneys are part of a network of plaintiff’s attorneys and that community of attorneys share their results with one another, and help one another to do best by their clients. You receive the benefit of this when you choose to work with a personal injury lawyer.

The Consultation Is Free

There’s no commitment required when speaking with a personal injury lawyer. Our office offers free consultations to help you assess whether you have a claim, and what your next steps would be in pursuing a settlement or filing a lawsuit to protect your rights against another party. If you would like to find out more, please call us at 704.749.7747 or click HERE and an attorney will call you. We’re here to help. We know you have choices. We hope you’ll choose to Recover With Us.

The total time it will take to reach a personal injury settlement from the time you finish treatment until the time you settle your case, is roughly 5 months.

This article explains the timeline and steps along the way to your personal injury settlement. The goal is to prepare each client for the rather drawn out process involved in reaching the best personal injury settlement possible for their claim or case.

First, we should distinguish between a personal injury claim and a personal injury case. A personal injury claim generally refers to the action you are taking to attempt to collect for damages against an insurance company prior to filing a lawsuit. Your personal injury claim becomes a personal injury case or lawsuit, only when a lawsuit is filed. Fortunately for all parties, most claims settle without your personal injury lawyer ever having to file a lawsuit.

Your First Step Is To Finish Treatment

Before you finish treatment, your personal injury attorney can’t request medical records and medical billing from your treatment facilities. Prior to finishing treatment, your personal injury attorney can do the following:

  • Set up the claim with the insurance company that represents the other party;
  • Gather information from you regarding the circumstances surrounding your accident and injury;
  • Keep track of the facilities where you are being treated, and the physicians who are treating you;

After Treatment Is Finished

Once treatment is finished, your personal injury attorney can order all of your medical records and medical billing that occurred between the date of the accident and the last date of treatment. These records generally take 45 to 60 days to be returned to the attorney’s office.

Reviewing Medical Records and Billing

After the billing and records have been received by your personal injury attorney’s office, the lawyer and paralegals can begin to review the billing and medical records and start the process of drafting your demand letter (The letter to be submitted to the insurance adjuster requesting a settlement). This process generally takes two weeks and once your demand letter and demand package are ready to be reviewed, you will be contacted by the office to review the letter together.

Reviewing the Demand Letter and Demand Package

Your personal injury attorney will ask you to review the draft of the demand letter to be sure there are no inconsistencies, to confirm the facts are correct, and to discuss the following elements of your demand:

Submitting The Demand Package

By the time the demand package has been reviewed and is ready to be submitted, and based on the timeline above, typically roughly 2 to 3 months have passed since you completed your treatment. This again allowed for time for medical bills and records to arrive, for the attorney to review them, and for you to discuss your demand with your attorney.

Once the demand is submitted, the insurance adjuster typically takes 30 days to review it prior to making a determination as to whether they agree with your theory of liability and whether they are willing to make an offer of settlement. Your attorney will contact you at the 30 day mark after submitting the demand, to review the status of the demand package and any offers which have been made.

Negotiating To Settlement

Once the insurance adjuster has had time to review the demand package and make an offer, you and your personal injury attorney will discuss a counter-offer in hopes of moving closer to your personal injury settlement. The good news is that the series of counter-offers which follows does not require 30 days of review. The review process has already been completed and both sides can negotiate quickly toward a settlement. This process ideally takes 30 to 45 days to finalize and reach a settlement.

When Will I Receive A Check

Once a personal injury settlement agreement is reached, the insurance company will generally issue a check immediately and send it to the attorney’s office to be deposited into the attorney’s trust account. You’ll be asked to sign a release for the insurance company as well as a settlement statement for the attorney’s office, and you’ll pick up your check at that time.

What If We Don’t Reach A Personal Injury Settlement

If you don’t or can’t reach a settlement, you and your attorney will discuss filing a lawsuit in the matter. The decision to file a lawsuit is one you and your attorney will both need to make. The law firm must consider the chances of success, the good and bad facts surrounding your case, and the cost of litigation. Your attorney will discuss all of these factors with you and weigh them not only when considering a settlement offer, but also if a settlement can’t be reached at all.

Can You Summarize The Timeline

A summary of the timeline outlined above, is below. Keep in mind each claim is unique and some may settle more quickly than others, while some take longer.

Step 1: Finish Treatment

Step 2: Order Medical Bills and Medical Records (Takes 45-60 days)

Step 3: Review Bills/Records (Takes 2 weeks)

Step 4: Discuss Demand Draft (Included in Step 3 above)

Step 5: Submit Demand Package And Receive First Offer (Takes 30 days)

Step 6: Finalize Negotiation and Disburse Funds (Takes 45 days)

The total time it will take from the time you finish treatment until the time you settle your case, is roughly 5 months.

If you would like to speak with a Charlotte personal injury attorney about your personal injury claim, please call 704.749.7747 today. The call is free and we’re happy to help. Or, you can click HERE to request a call from us. We know you have choices, and we hope you will choose to Recover With Us.