Anyone could be injured in an incident of medical malpractice, a traffic collision, or some other type of accident scenario. If you’re injured in Indiana due to someone else’s negligence, the right personal injury attorney can discuss your rights and fight for justice on your behalf.
What rights do you have if you’re injured by another person’s negligence? How do personal injury claims work? What compensation will you receive should your injury claim prove successful? And how long does it take for injury victims to be compensated?
Continue reading, and you will find the answers to these questions. You’ll also learn what steps you should take if you are injured by negligence in the State of Indiana.
How Does a Personal Injury Claim Begin?
When a person who has been injured claims that someone else’s negligence caused the injury or injuries, the victim may initiate a legal action with the help of a personal injury lawyer.
The personal injury process starts when the victim has a lawyer review the incident to determine if the victim has standing to bring a legal action. The attorney may then negotiate with the negligent party (the “defendant”) for compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and more.
How Are Personal Injury Cases Resolved?
Very few personal injury cases in Indiana go to court. Most of these cases are resolved outside of the courtroom in private negotiations.
But if no acceptable settlement amount is offered during the negotiations, the victim’s injury attorney may suggest going to trial. In a personal injury trial, the victim’s lawyer will ask jurors to order the payment of damages to the victim.
In most of these cases, the victim is entitled by Indiana law to complete compensation for injury-related ongoing and future healthcare costs, lost wages, lost future earning capacity, personal suffering and pain, and all related damages and losses.
You Pay No Attorney’s Fees Unless You Win
Your first meeting with an Indiana personal injury lawyer is free. There is no obligation. Should you choose to proceed with an injury claim, the attorney will be working on a “contingency fee” basis, which means that you’ll pay no lawyer’s fee unless and until you receive compensation.
It’s a system that allows everyone, whether your circumstances are modest or affluent, to access the court system and seek justice.
What Factors Determine How Long a Personal Injury Case Takes?
The amount of time needed to resolve an injury claim in Indiana depends on:
1. When, where, why, and how your injury occurred
2. How long medical care will be required
3. Whether the two sides agree or disagree regarding what happened
4. Whether the two sides agree or disagree that the injury was caused by the accident
5. The time needed to gather and consider evidence and witness testimony
6. Whether there’s a private settlement or a trial
7. The court’s schedule – if the case goes to court
What Can Hold Up the Progress of a Personal Injury Case?
Some cases take longer to resolve than others. Some of the factors that could delay the resolution of your case include:
1. Liability: Sometimes it’s obvious who’s responsible for an accident, but in other cases, there may be a dispute over liability. Indiana is a “comparative fault” state, so a victim of negligence may recover compensation even if that victim shared fault for the accident.
2. Causation: The exact cause of a personal injury must be determined after an injury claim is filed. Is the injury directly traceable to the accident, or was the injury pre-existing? Is the injury victim’s claim consistent with the medical evidence?
3. Damages: The extent of the losses and injuries must be considered. Is there applicable insurance coverage? If not, does the liable party have other resources? What monetary amount satisfies the victim’s legal right to damages?
4. Factual or legal complexities: For example, if a personal injury case has multiple defendants, each with their own attorneys, that will slow the progress of the case considerably.
5. High value: If a great deal of money is involved – six or more figures – a personal injury case is likely to take longer.
6. Severity of injuries: Negotiations will not begin until the victim has reached maximum medical improvement. If the injury victim is still under medical care, it may take weeks or even months to determine precisely what compensation the victim will be entitled to.
Most personal injury cases can be resolved within several months, but if a claim goes to court, the process could take a year or longer. If there’s an appeal – and that’s rare – a personal injury case could be in the courts for three, four, or even five years.
Patience Can Pay
If you choose to pursue a personal injury claim, have some patience. You’ll probably receive an immediate settlement offer. Reject it. Quick settlement offers seldom come close to what your injury claim is genuinely worth.
Your injury attorney can almost certainly acquire more compensation, but you’ll need to give your attorney time to develop the strongest case possible.
The truth is that your personal injury claim will not be resolved in just a couple of days. Take advantage of the time to recover from your injuries. Your injury lawyer will handle all of the details while you regain your health.
In the Anderson area, if you’re injured because someone else was negligent, compensation and justice are both attainable, but you must have proof for your claim, and you must have an Indiana injury attorney who knows what it takes for your claim to prevail.
When Should You Speak to an Indiana Injury Attorney?
Personal injury cases do take some time. That’s why taking legal action right away after you’ve been injured – and getting the justice process started immediately – is so important.
Now or in the future, if you become the injured victim of another person’s negligence in Indiana, as soon as you’ve been examined by a healthcare professional, reach out to an Anderson personal injury attorney as quickly as possible.