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

As the founding attorney of Ilganayev Law Firm, PLLC, I’ve dealt with many car accident claims, and no two cases are the same. In every car accident case I worked on, clients always ask the same question: How long will it take to settle the case? In simple terms, several things can make your case take longer to settle. Sadly, there’s no magic number to tell you how long your case will take.

Understanding this, there are four main things that everyone should know to have a good idea of what delays or expedites a car accident claim:

Understanding No-Fault Insurance In New York:

  • In New York, we have what is called a no-fault insurance system. This means you must file a claim with your car insurance first. This no-fault insurance (or Personal Injury Protection – PIP) will cover some of your losses, like medical bills and lost wages. The exact amount depends on your policy.
  • When you file a no-fault insurance claim, the insurance folks have 15 days to ask for more information. Once they get this information, they have another 15 days to agree or disagree to pay you. In total, the no-fault insurance part can take up to 30 days.
  • If your costs go beyond what your no-fault insurance can cover, you can go after more money through a personal injury claim. In that case, you must file with your car insurance first, which can make the process longer.

Medical Treatments and Estimates:

  • The seriousness of your injuries can affect when you can start the legal process. After a car accident, getting medical attention immediately is important for your well-being and case. This helps you recover and provide proof of your injuries.
  • If your injuries are severe and require a lot of medical care, you may have to wait until you’re better to start legal action. This means that cases with serious injuries can take longer to settle. Some examples of serious injuries include cuts, brain injuries, spinal cord damage, loss of limbs, internal organ damage, broken bones, and concussions.
  • The reasons why you have to wait until you are better are (1) you should prioritize your health first always, and (2) it is crucial to include all your current and future medical costs in your claim. This means you should wait until you know the full extent of your injuries before filing a personal injury claim.

Insurance Company Cooperation:

Your insurance company’s cooperation can affect how fast or how slow your case settles. They can choose to:

  1. Agree with your claim and pay you the amount you asked for; or
  2. Make a counteroffer to your claim; or
  3. Deny your claim and refuse to pay you.
  • If the insurance agrees immediately, your case will settle quickly, but this only happens sometimes. Insurance companies usually try to avoid paying a lot of money. With that said, they may make a lower offer, delay the claim, or refuse to pay.
  • If they make a counteroffer, you or your lawyer can negotiate for more money. Your lawyer might even have to take the case to court if they do not cooperate. Taking the case to court can make the case take even longer, as court cases can take up to two years to settle.

Getting a Lawyer –The sooner you get a good car accident lawyer, the quicker you should get your settlement:

  • Lawyers know the legal rules in New York and understand the tricks insurance companies use to delay claims. With that said, the sooner you talk to a lawyer about your case, the sooner they can start working on getting you the money you deserve for your injuries. At ILGANAYEV LAW FIRM PLLC, we are dedicated to making things easier for you and providing comprehensive legal representation. Contact us today to discuss your situation and find the justice you deserve.

ATTORNEY ADVERTISING. This blog post is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. For specific legal guidance related to your situation, please consult with an attorney. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

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