What Steps Do I Have to Take Before I Receive My Settlement?

According to the American Judges Association, only 3% of civil cases go to trial. The rest are settled out of court. This is especially true of personal injury cases involving motor vehicle accidents, dog bites, slip-and-fall, and other cases involving serious negligence-based physical injuries. So, if you are harmed in an accident, your case stands a good chance of being settled outside of the courtroom. Serious injuries are often accompanied by tens of thousands of dollars in medical expenses. It comes as no surprise then that personal injury victims are often stressed over financial matters and hoping for a fast settlement. Unfortunately, the pressure to obtain money in the quickest way possible, usually by accepting the insurance company’s initial offer. often backfires, leaving them liable for thousands in unanticipated expenses relating to their accident. The best way to ensure that your medical and legal bills are paid, and that you receive full and fair financial compensation for your injuries and other damages, is to partner with an experienced Hampton personal injury attorney from Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp. We have 40 combined years of experience in helping our injured clients get the justice and recovery they deserve. Call us today to schedule a free consultation. , 

How Will My Settlement Be Distributed?

Before your funds can be distributed, you will have to sign a document releasing the liable party from any further claims arising from the same incident. Your attorney might also have to sign a form dismissing any court action already initiated on your behalf. 

Once the necessary paperwork is signed and submitted, your settlement award will be released into a trust account set up by your attorney. From there, the funds will be used to cover all of your case-related expenses before anything is released to you. These include:

Unpaid Medical Bills

Many personal injury victims end up with overdue medical bills that were not covered by their health insurance. These must be paid in full before you receive any money.  

Attorney Costs and Fees

In addition to your medical bills, your litigation expenses and attorney fees must also be paid in full. Our Hampton personal injury law firm works on a contingency fee. This means you pay nothing upfront and we only get paid if your case is successful. You will also need to repay your attorney for the court costs and legal fees they covered. For instance, your attorney might have paid your filing fees to the court or hired an expert witness to testify on your behalf or your medical provider could have billed them for supplying a copy of your medical records.

Your Settlement Award

After your medical bills, attorney fees, and all other expenses associated with your personal injury case are paid, your attorney will then hand over the remaining portion of your settlement award. If there are any unique aspects to your case, like a minor victim, your lawyer will walk you through any other required procedures.

How Long Will the Settlement Process Take?

The length of time that passes between accepting a settlement and actually receiving it varies widely because of the numerous people and factors involved. For example, delays could be caused by issues with medical liens or simply waiting for the insurer to make the payment. Generally speaking, most settlements are fully processed in a couple of weeks. 

Talk to a Hampton Personal Injury Attorney

If you sustained injuries in an accident through no fault of your own, and have questions or concerns about the personal injury process, including how settlement awards are distributed, the experienced Hampton personal injury attorneys at Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp can help. We recently won a $1.85 million wrongful death settlement for the family of a motorcyclist who was fatally struck by a truck driver who failed to yield the right-of-way. To schedule a free consultation, call (833) 997-1774 or fill out our online contact form. To better serve our clients, we have offices in Hampton, Portsmouth, Norfolk, and Virginia Beach.