Settling A Personal Injury Claim In Pittsburgh, PA Might Be A Longer Process Than You Think
Pittsburgh, PA personal injury claims don’t get settled overnight. In fact, the process can drag on for several months. This is why it is crucial that you hire a Pittsburgh, PA personal injury attorney who can fight for you during each step of this process. We have outlined those steps below. No two personal injury cases are alike, which is why you need an attorney that will give your case the personal attention it deserves.
The first step in settling a Pittsburgh, PA personal injury claim is establishing liability. An investigation may be necessary to establish liability. The investigation could involve medical professionals, accident reconstructionists, and other experts in Pittsburgh, PA. The purpose of the investigation is to determine who is at fault, as well as what damages resulted from the accident. Potential damages include:
- Lost Wages
- Medical Expenses
- Rehabilitation Expenses
- Property Damage
It is essential that you work with an experienced Pittsburgh, PA attorney so that you can receive the maximum compensation for your injury. Fenters Ward is one such law firm in Pittsburgh.
Filing The Claim
When the investigation has been completed in Pittsburgh, PA, the next step will be to send a letter of demand to the insured, as well as his/her insurance company. In some cases, the insurance company will pay an acceptable settlement. In most cases, however, the insurance company will refuse to pay, or will offer an inadequate settlement. If this happens, a formal complaint is issued to the court.
This is when the discovery process begins. The discovery process is when your Pittsburgh, PA personal injury attorney and the defendant’s attorney will gather information about the case. Most Pittsburgh, PA personal injury cases are settled during this process. If the case cannot be settled, mediation is the next step.
Mediation is when both sides meet with a neutral third party. This party is typically appointed by the court. The goal of mediation is for both sides to present their cases and reach a negotiation. The vast majority of Pittsburgh, PA personal injury claims are settled during or prior to mediation. If a large sum of money is involved, or if a settlement cannot be reached, the case will likely have to move to the last step of the process: trial.
Unfortunately, it may take months for the trial to happen, though the trial process itself typically takes less than a week. If appeals are made after the trial, it will take longer to settle your claim in Pittsburgh, PA. In cases involving severe injury and substantial damages, the appeal process may be worth it, though it is certainly not worthwhile in every personal injury case in Pittsburgh. Your attorney at Fenters Ward will be able to coach you on what steps to take when settling your personal injury claim.