When a person is injured at the fault of someone else, it may seem that time goes by so slowly, especially when they are awaiting their personal injury case to be settled. Medical bills start piling up and injuries often limit the victim’s ability to provide their family with income. It is not a wonder that many people want to know how long it will take to settle their New Orleans personal injury case. The best thing to keep in mind is that each case is unique, and therefore, it can differ from one to the next. For their case to be researched properly and the optimal outcome to be reached, their personal injury attorney will need to spend sufficient time on their specific case.  

Some people believe that the length of a personal injury case drags on because the courts are so bogged down with other lawsuits, many of which are frivolous. Actually, it has nothing to do with overloaded court dockets. This is just one of the many personal injury myths that many people think are true. In reality, the things that make each case unique are the same reasons the case may take longer to settle. 

What Qualifies as a New Orleans Personal Injury Case?

Personal injury results in situations where someone acts in a negligent manner, and that carelessness causes harm to another person. This could be the result of an automobile accident (the most common), slip and fall, dog bites, assault, medical malpractice or in any case that results in the injury of a person due to someone else’s negligent or purposeful act. Personal injuries vary in complexity, severity, and length of treatment.

What Kinds Of Injuries Do Personal Injuries Include?

The list of injuries is long, but some of the major kinds of injuries that can be considered in personal injury cases include:

  • Traumatic brain injuries, concussions, and other head injuries
  • Broken bones, crushing injuries
  • Burns, electrical shock, chemical-caused injuries
  • Back injuries, or spinal and neck injuries
  • Loss of limbs, eyes, digits
  • Loss of life

Extent Of The Victim’s Injuries Could Delay Settlement. 

Severe injuries may include extended hospitalization, reconstruction, rehabilitation, or other prolonged treatment that might add to the time it takes to effectively prepare a case. When the personal injury attorney uses due diligence to prepare the case, victims will be more likely to have a thorough case that results in an optimal outcome. Because a settlement should include future as well as past medical expenses, trying to rush through a compensation settlement would not be in the best interest of the client. Patience, though difficult, is necessary to fully capture the extent of the damage, which could include several of the following:

  • Medical expenses caused by the personal injury
    • Past and current hospital bills, testing, lab work, physician visits, medication, medical devices
    • Future medical needs such as in-home care, prosthetics, rehabilitation, surgery, or mobility devices.
    • Transportation costs including ambulance fees, transportation to medical appointments, etc.  
  • Loss of income
    • Loss of current income due to injuries, or loss of future income because the injury prevents the victim from working in the same capacity as prior to the accident.
  • Non-economic damage
    • Pain and suffering
    • Loss of consortium or companionship
    • Permanent impairment or disfigurement
    • Reduced quality of life

If injuries are not as complex or do not require a lengthy recovery time, or if medical professionals do not foresee future medical issues as a result of an injury, the personal injury case could progress more quickly. Cases may often be settled within a few months to a year after the victim is released from the doctor.  

New Orleans Personal Injury Cases Require Fair Settlements

Once it has been determined that the claimant has a standing to sue, a New Orleans personal injury attorney prepares a case. The victim’s attorney will submit a settlement demand to the liable insurance company. Usually, within thirty days, the insurance company will make an offer to settle. The offer is then presented to the victim by their attorney, and if they agree to the proposed amount, the case can be settled.   

If negotiations are unsuccessful, a claim is filed for a personal injury lawsuit, and the pre-trial phase known as discovery begins. The discovery portion of a personal injury case is where the attorneys gather information to support their case. It can involve depositions of the victim and witnesses and sharing of evidence between sides. The information can be presented during mediation. If an agreement is not made through mediation or negotiation, the case may proceed to a jury trial, where both sides will present their evidence.  At the conclusion of the trial, either a judge or a jury will determine the settlement amount due to the plaintiff.

How Can Dudley DeBosier Help With My Case?   

At Dudley DeBosier, we put people first.  We know that each personal injury case is unique and the clients we represent deserve the best representation from an attorney they can trust. We also know how overwhelming it can be for victims of personal injury cases.  We are experienced at getting fair settlements for our clients and work hard so they can heal from their injuries and get their lives back to normal. That’s why we offer a no-fee guarantee. We never charge a fee until your case has been successfully settled.  We offer a free consultation so we can get to know you, assess your personal injury claim, and proceed to fight for the maximum compensation that you deserve. Our experienced New Orleans car accident attorneys and supporting staff are here to help in any one of our seven convenient locations.  Contact us today to get started!

(Reviewed by Chad Lederman at the New Orleans Dudley DeBosier office)

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