How Long Could It Take to Settle a Car Accident Claim?

If you are seeking compensation after a car crash in Wisconsin, you may be wondering, “How long could it take to settle a car accident claim?”

Question:

How long will it take to resolve my car accident claim?

Answer:

A car accident is the most common type of injury from an accident that we handle. People often ask us how long it will take for their case to settle. There are two types of injuries that are suffered in an accident: ones in which an injury occurs and the person is able to heal after a certain period and ones in which the injured person never returns to 100 percent. In the former, the period of time might be one month or it might be six months. In those cases, we encourage our clients to continue to document medically with their doctors, nurses, and physical therapists, the level of their injury, so that when they do resolve their injury, we have medical evidence to present to the insurance company regarding the period of time that it took for them to get back to a hundred percent. It is also very important for a client to have a final evaluation by their doctor to document that they’re at a hundred percent. We hear about preexisting conditions a lot these days, with respect to health insurance coverage; having a final examination indicating that you have recovered a hundred percent may help you down the road, if something else should happen or if that same condition returns.

In the second type of case, a client has exhausted everything medically that can be done and everything that a doctor has prescribed should be done. Eventually, a decision is made that the client is as good as they are probably going to get. In that type of case, an experienced lawyer is going to look at your medical records and make a decision regarding the advocacy of the doctor in your case. Some doctors do not want to get involved in injury cases, and some doctors do a wonderful job on behalf of their patients. We’ll help you make a decision as to what doctor may best provide opinions in your case. Once we do that, we’ll often have a conference with the doctor to confirm what he’s going to say in a final report. This report should include some basic requirements – what injuries were suffered in the accident, what type of treatment you needed to get better, and what level of residual injury you will have for the rest of your life. In that type of case, we may reach that point in one year, or your medical options may not be exhausted for 18 months.

The point is, a case takes as long as it takes either to resolve your injury or to obtain final opinions. Once we obtain the final opinions, we present your case to the insurance company. Because we put everything together appropriately in the early stages of your case, we can present a case to an insurance company quickly once we obtain final opinions. The insurance company then commonly takes 30 to 90 days to get back to us. This is Stage One because, at that stage, we’re going to receive an offer from an insurance company after which point the lawyer on your case should be able to tell you, based on that initial offer, what the range of settlement of that insurance adjuster is. It gives us a good insight as to whether or not we think your case is going to resolve short of a trial.

At the same time, if we file suit too quickly without exhausting that adjuster’s authority on their file, we know we’re going to revisit settlement at a later date, but we haven’t accomplished anything. Usually in an injury claim, we want to speak to the insurance company four, five or six times to make sure that we are moving that adjuster to the highest end of their range. We will then make a decision here in our office with you as to whether or not we think what’s being offered is fair in your case.


If you have been seriously injured in a car accident, you may have questions about how long an injury case will take to settle in Wisconsin.
Contact Keberle, Patrykus & Laufenberg, LLP, today to consult with an experienced Washington County car accident attorney.
We can help you recover the full and fair compensation you deserve.

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