injury lawsuit in order to recover financial compensation. Read our blog or contact our firm to learn more.
Suffering an injury in an accident is an extremely painful and emotionally overwhelming situation, especially if another person caused your injury and the underlying accident. Besides your health, you might be wondering about the legal process in a personal injury case, including how long it takes recover your entitled compensation to pay for your medical bills, lost wages from missing work, and your pain and suffering.
The following are the common legal steps in a personal injury case:
- Obtain medical attention – Whether you require emergency treatment, or you suffered soft-tissue injuries that are not visible, you must always seek medical care after an accident. Not only do you want to receive the proper treatment for your injury, but you also need to have a medical record of your injury to show the insurance adjuster – and possibly the jury – that your claim is serious.
- Discuss your case with a lawyer – If you suffered a serious injury in an accident or the at-fault party is blaming you for causing the accident, it is wise to consult with a personal injury attorney to learn about your legal options. Your attorney can handle all the paperwork, negotiate with the at-fault party and their insurance company, and protect your rights throughout the legal process while you recover from injury. Consultations are often free of charge.
- Make settlement offer – Many personal injury claims are settled before ever filing a lawsuit. If your lawyer believes you can reach a settlement, he/she will make a demand to the at-fault party and their insurer. Keep in mind, this demand is often not made until you reached a point of maximum medical improvement (MMI) to determine how much your case is worth. If you still have any lingering injuries or symptoms after a settlement offer is made, the offer might be undervalued.
- File a personal injury lawsuit – If you and the other party cannot reach a settlement, you and your attorney will file a personal injury lawsuit in civil court. In Ohio, you have two years from the date of the accident and injury to file a lawsuit.
- Discovery – This part of the legal process involves both parties investigating each other’s legal claims, evidence, and legal claims. This can take up to one year, depending on the circumstances and factors of the case.
- Negotiation – At the end of the discovery process, settlement talks are renewed. Negotiations often occur through mediation, where a third-party mediator will help each party and their attorneys resolve the case.
- Trial – If mediation is unsuccessful, then the case will go to trial and be determined by a jury. After opening arguments, witness testimony, and closing arguments, the jury will reach a verdict to determine an award.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident caused by a negligent party in Ohio and Pennsylvania, contact Hartwig Law, LLC today and schedule a free consultation.