If you have been unduly injured, you may be wondering what the process of receiving compensation will look like. To win a personal injury suit, you will need to go through litigation. Here’s everything you need to know about how long does litigation take.
What Does Litigation Mean?
Litigation is the process of settling a civil case through the legal system. There are several stages to the litigation process, such as the following:
- Filing a complaint
- Filing an answer
- Written discovery
- Discovery motions
- Dispositive motions
- Trial by jury
Not every personal injury claim will go through every step. In fact, most cases are settled before they go to trial.
How Long Does it Take to Litigate a Case?
The time it takes to go through litigation will vary depending on the circumstances of the case. It can take anywhere from a month to several years. Cases that go to trial will often take a longer amount of time. Typically, you can expect litigation to last at least a year.
What the Victim Must Prove in Court
In a personal injury lawsuit, the victim will need to prove that their injury was the fault of the defendant. You must also demonstrate that the insurance company did not meet the legal standards to protect you from injury.
Damages That Are Considered Personal Injury
If the defendant is found guilty, they will be required to pay you damages. Damages are the financial compensation that must be paid out to the victim. There are several types of damages, but personal injury damages have two categories: general and special damages.
General damages typically involve a physical injury or a consequence of a physical injury. They can include physical pain or other physical impairments as a result of the injury.
Special damages, on the other hand, tend to be financial damages. They can involve loss of earnings or other financial losses.
Extent of Damages and Compensation in a Personal Injury Lawsuit
There are many types of damages that you can seek in a personal injury lawsuit. Here are some of the most common types of damages for personal injury lawsuits.
- Pain and suffering
- Medical expenses for treatment
- Damages for a loss of earnings
- Loss of future earning capability
- Damages for a wrongful death
- Damages from a deformity
The Litigation Involves These Steps
Retaining an Attorney
The first step of any litigation process is to retain an attorney. Find a lawyer in your area that has experience and a track record of success handling similar cases.
Investigating the Claim
Your personal injury lawyer will help you to gather the necessary evidence to support your claim. This can involve medical records, accident reports, and more.
In many cases, you’ll need to know the extent of the injury to make a personal injury claim. Depending on the details of your injury, you may need to wait until your doctors have a good understanding of your injury and its permanence. You’ll need to know the lasting damage the injury will cause you to file a claim.
Many personal injury cases get settled without involving the courts. This is especially common for less severe or long-lasting injuries. Your attorney will work with the opposing counsel to see if your case can be settled without formally filing with the courts.
If the case cannot be settled in pre-suit negotiations, it will move toward formal proceedings. This step involves moving through the legal system and may include depositions or a trial. Most major personal injury cases will move to formal proceedings.
Do You Require the Services of a Litigation Expert?
If you think that you may be entitled to compensation for an injury, consult a litigation expert as soon as possible.
For more information on the process for litigating a personal injury claim, schedule a free consultation with The Legacy Lawyers.