When accident victims agree to a settlement for their injury claims, they are usually eager to receive funds and may have questions about that process. Will the insurance company pay you right away? Will you receive a check in the mail?
Below, learn more about how personal injury settlement proceeds are typically distributed and when you are likely to receive compensation. Your attorney will explain the factors that apply to your specific case.
Before any funds are distributed, the plaintiff must sign a form that releases the at-fault party from any future claims for the same accident. The plaintiff’s attorney may also need to sign documents to dismiss any court action if the process was already started on behalf of the plaintiff.
After all necessary documents are distributed, signed and submitted, the compensation you won will be released to your attorney’s trust account. However, funds from the settlement cannot be released to you until all expenses related to your case have been paid.
There may be outstanding medical expenses that are not covered by your health insurance policy that need to be paid before you receive your check. It may be possible to settle your bills for less than the full amount by negotiating with the insurance company or hospital.
Before receiving your settlement funds, any attorney fees and litigation costs must be paid if you had legal representation. At the Arnold Law Firm, we work on contingency – which means you do not pay us for anything up front and we only get paid if we recover funds for you.
You may also need to reimburse your law firm for legal fees and court costs associated with your case before you receive payment. For example, your law firm may have fronted the cost of court filing fees or hired an industry expert to testify in support of your claim. Your health care provider may have also charged a fee for providing a copy of your medical records.
Once your medical expenses, legal fees and any other expenses related to your case are paid for, your law firm will disburse the remaining funds to you. If there are special circumstances, such as a victim who is a minor, your attorney will explain any additional necessary procedures.
The amount of time it takes to receive your compensation can vary because it depends upon multiple factors and entities, but most payments are processed within a few weeks. For instance, delays can result from waiting for the defendant’s insurance company to issue payment or communications about medical liens.
If you were injured in an accident and have questions about the personal injury litigation process, including how funds are disbursed, contact us at (916) 777-7777.
The Arnold Law Firm offers no-obligation, no-cost case evaluations and representation on contingency – we don’t get paid unless we obtain compensation for your claim. Our Sacramento personal injury lawyers are prepared to seek maximum compensation on your behalf, should you have a viable claim.
A face-to-face meeting is not required, so you can start and finish the process from the comfort and safety of your own home.