After a car accident, people contact their insurance companies to file claims and get the process started of repairing damages and paying for medical expenses. However, insurance companies frequently offer low settlements in hopes that they will not have to cover the true cost of the damages.
When medical needs are extensive and the insurance company’s offer does not cover everything, an injured party may decide to file a lawsuit to obtain compensation for all the damages.
Time limits that affect litigation
Illinois has a deadline that may make legal action impossible if the claim has already drawn out for too long. The clock starts ticking from the date of the accident, and the time to file a personal injury lawsuit runs out at two years, according to Illinois Statute 735 ILCS 5/13-202. Whether or not the insurance company dragged out the process by failing to cover the cost of the injuries is not relevant.
Another time-sensitive issue with delayed litigation is the compilation of evidence. The longer people wait to file, the more difficult it may be to gather proof of fault.
Issues that prolong cases
People should not wait on full medical recovery to file, but it is a good reason to delay going to trial. Until they know how much their injuries will cost and what the permanent damages are, it may be difficult to identify the compensation needed.
Other factors that affect how long a case takes include the number of parties with liability, the availability of the evidence and the negotiation process. It could take a year or more for the case to reach trial. Filing early may result in compensation when accident victims need it most.