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How Long Does a Personal Injury Lawsuit Take

How Long Does a Personal Injury Lawsuit Take?

How Long Does a Personal Injury Lawsuit Take?

If you’ve been injured in an accident and suffered damages, you are likely ready to put it all behind you and get back to living your life. Many personal injury matters can involve significant damages, such as lost income, damage to your personal property, medical and rehabilitation costs, and pain and suffering. And while recovering for those damages is possible through a lawsuit or settlement, personal injury matters can take a long time to resolve.

How Long Do Lawsuit Settlements Take?

Most civil lawsuits, including personal injury matters, are resolved without going to court. In fact, according to the Government of Canada, about 98% of all civil lawsuits never go to trial. Instead, they are settled outside of court or resolved through another method of alternative dispute resolution.

A settlement is essentially a legal agreement between the parties, which resolves the claims between the parties. Settlement agreements are very common ways to resolve personal injury lawsuits and involve the party responsible for the accident paying a specific sum in damages to the victim of the accident. In exchange for the settlement amount, which compensates the plaintiff for their damages, the legal proceedings are terminated.

Settlement negotiations can take a long time to resolve. Depending on the liability issues at hand, the damages involved, and the willingness of the parties to settle the matter outside of court, the settlement process can take months or even years to result in an agreement.

How Long Does a Lawsuit Take in Court?

If a settlement is not possible, then your personal injury matter may need to be litigated. There is a process that must be followed in personal injury cases. The person who sues, called the plaintiff, files a pleading with the appropriate court, setting out their claims, damages, and the remedy they are seeking. In return, the party being sued, called the defendant, files a statement of defense. Once the pleadings are exchanged, the period of discovery begins, allowing both parties to formally exchange relevant information about the case.

When the case moves to trial, the parties get their chance to present their evidence and witnesses in court. The judge — or jury, depending on the civil claims involved — will consider the evidence and determine which party should prevail. If the plaintiff wins, the judge or jury will then consider how to compensate the plaintiff, including monetary damages available for the plaintiff’s recovery.

As with settlements, there is no way to predict how long a lawsuit will take to go to court. Many courts are experiencing serious backlogs, meaning it can take many months for a civil case to be heard. That said, generally, the settlement process will take less time than litigation, making it a faster route for many people pursuing personal injury claims.

What Are The Chances of Winning a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

There are few guarantees when it comes to personal injury lawsuits, and many factors make winning more or less likely. For example:

  • The facts and circumstances of your accident
  • The strength of your evidence
  • The presence of witnesses and the strength of their testimony
  • The applicable laws that are involved in your claims
  • The extent of your injuries and medical and rehabilitative needs
  • The damages involved, including both out-of-pocket costs and general damages
  • Whether either party is likely to admit liability
  • The extent to which either party is responsible for the accident

What Are Some Examples of Personal Injury Settlement Amounts?

It is nearly impossible to predict the exact amount you are likely to receive in a personal injury settlement, as many different factors can influence the settlement offer. Generally, you can recover income replacement benefits, medical and rehabilitation benefits, pain and suffering damages, and other benefits. The amount which will be available to you in recovery varies greatly, depending on the facts of your case.

Ontario law includes the Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule, or SABS for short. This core piece of legislation is a combination of no-fault benefits that are required to be part of all auto insurance policies in our province. There are, however, also some clear limitations to the total medical and rehabilitation care amounts available to those who have been injured in Ontario:

  • Minor injuries. Up to a maximum of $3,500
  • Non-catastrophic injuries. Up to a maximum of $65,000
  • Catastrophic impairment. Up to a maximum of $1,000,000

Seeking additional compensation from an at-fault claim can make all the difference when it comes to getting a lifetime of adequate care. An experienced and knowledgeable personal injury lawyer can make all the difference when it comes to obtaining a fair and reasonable settlement. Not only can they be invaluable in negotiating with the other party and their insurance company, but a lawyer can navigate the personal injury process much more efficiently — and effectively — than if you were to do so on your own.

Contact an Experienced Hamilton Injury Lawyer for a Free Consultation

I am a personal injury lawyer focused on helping people heal the hurt. My team and I handle a wide variety of personal injury cases in Hamilton and the surrounding areas, including motor vehicle accidents, long-term disability matters, wrongful death cases, and many others. I work with clients to get the available benefits as quickly as possible, including resolving matters through settlement and dispute resolution mechanisms like mediation and arbitration, pre-trials and trials.

For a free consultation with Ontario motor vehicle accident lawyer Derek Wilson, call us at 855-769-0418 or fill out an online request form. We will respond in a timely manner so you and your family can receive the help you need. I am dedicated to helping you and your family recover fair compensation and will always have your best interests in mind. If you have questions about your personal injury claim, call us today and we’ll answer all of them and determine if we can help you obtain fair compensation.

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