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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

How Long Does It Take to Settle a Car Accident Case?

If you’ve been in a car accident, you may be wondering how long it will take to settle the case. Depending on the severity of the accident, the number of parties involved, and whether or not the case goes to trial, the average time it takes to settle a car accident case in Michigan is about two years.

However, several things can affect this timeline, so it’s important to be aware of what to expect throughout the process. This article will discuss these things that can impact how long it takes to settle a car accident case in Michigan.

The Severity of the Accident

One of the main factors that can affect how long it takes to settle a car accident case is the severity of the accident. According to the auto accident lawyer, if there are serious injuries or fatalities involved, it will likely take longer to settle the case than if there was only property damage. It also takes longer to settle cases that go to trial, as opposed to those that are settled out of court.

For instance, if you were in a minor fender bender with only property damage, the insurance companies will likely be able to quickly come to an agreement on who is at fault and how much should be paid out. However, if someone was seriously injured or killed in the accident, the insurance companies will want to do a more thorough investigation to determine who is liable. This can take time, and if the insurance companies are not able to agree, the case may go to trial.

The Number of Parties Involved

Another factor that can affect how long it takes to settle a car accident case is the number of parties involved. If there are multiple drivers and passengers involved in the accident, it can take longer to settle the case than if there were only two parties involved because each party will have its own insurance company that will need to be involved in the claims process.

Additionally, if there are multiple parties involved in the accident, there is a greater chance that one of the parties will dispute liability. This can further delay the process as the insurance companies try to determine who is at fault.

Going to Trial?

If the insurance companies are unable to agree on who is liable for the accident, the case may go to trial which can take months or even years to resolve, depending on the complexity of the case. If the case does go to trial, it will likely take longer to settle than if it had been settled out of court.

Let’s say, for example, that you were in a car accident with another driver and both of your insurance companies agree that the other driver is at fault. However, the other driver’s insurance company is only willing to pay out $5,000 for the damages, but your repair estimate is $10,000.

In this case, you may decide to file a lawsuit against the other driver to try to get the full amount of damages which means it’s going to trial. However, if you can settle out of court, it will likely take less time.

How Many Damages Are Sought

The number of damages that are sought can also affect how long it takes to settle a car accident case. If you are only seeking damages for property damage, it will likely take less time to settle the case than if you are seeking damages for personal injuries. This is because property damage cases are typically less complex than personal injury cases and don’t require as much investigation.

However, if you are seeking damages for personal injuries, the insurance companies will need to investigate the accident and determine how much your injuries are worth. This can take time, and if the insurance companies are not able to agree on an amount, the case may go to trial.

The Ability to Prove Liability

If you are planning on filing a lawsuit against the other driver, you will need to prove that they were at fault for the accident. This can be done by gathering evidence such as witness statements, photos of the accident scene, and your testimony. If you have a clear case of who is at fault, it will likely take less time to settle the case. However, if liability is disputed, it can take longer to settle the case.

For instance, let’s say that you were in a car accident with another driver and there were no witnesses to the accident. In this case, it may be difficult to prove who is at fault and it could take longer to settle the case.

On the other hand, if there were witnesses to the accident and they all say that the other driver is at fault, it will likely be easier to prove liability and the case will settle more quickly.

The Statute of Limitations

In Michigan, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit is three years from the date of the accident. This means that if you don’t file a lawsuit within three years of the accident, you will not be able to seek damages.

If you are close to the statute of limitations, it may be necessary to settle the case more quickly to ensure that you can file a lawsuit. However, if you have plenty of time before the statute of limitations expires, you may be able to take your time in settling the case.

You should also be aware that the statute of limitations may be different if you are filing a lawsuit against a government entity. In Michigan, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit against a government entity is only one year.

How long it will take to settle your car accident case depends on several factors. These include the severity of the accident, how many parties are involved, whether or not the case goes to trial, and the statute of limitations. If you’ve been in a car accident, it’s important to be aware of these factors so that you can understand what to expect.

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