How Are Personal Injury Settlements Paid Out in Las Vegas?

how are personal injury settlements paid out

It’s common to feel a wave of relief in the moments immediately following a personal injury settlement. You’ve been hurt. You’ve experienced trauma.

The road ahead may still be long and difficult, but you at least know that you will be able to pay the next medical bill that shows up in your mailbox. And yet, you wonder: when and how will you receive your settlement?

In most personal injury cases, the settlement is paid as a lump sum via a check made out to both the lawyer and the injured party. Before the funds are released to the client, the lawyer must first resolve any liens or debts related to the case, deduct their fees, and ensure all legal obligations are met. This process may take some time before the remaining settlement funds are disbursed to the injured party.

How Long Does it Take to Receive Money From the Point of Injury?

If you were recently injured in an accident, the road to your settlement check could be long and complicated. Unfortunately, getting a fair settlement agreement can take time.

There is a lot of red tape and, depending on the nature of your claim, complex details that need to be investigated. There is also usually a negotiation aspect that can heavily influence when settlements get paid.

There are situations where everything goes very smoothly, and you receive the settlement within weeks. Generally, these situations are unambiguous. When the case is complicated or the physical injury involved requires a lot of settlement money, it could be months or even years before you receive your settlement check.

Here are a few factors that may influence the time it takes to get your personal injury settlement payout.

Extent of Injuries

The severity of injuries sustained in a personal injury case is a pivotal factor influencing the length of time it takes to reach a settlement. Complex injuries often necessitate extensive medical assessments, treatments, and a prolonged recovery period.

Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI)

Waiting until you reach your Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI) is generally advised before settling a personal injury claim. MMI represents the point in the recovery process where the injured party’s condition is deemed stable and unlikely to improve significantly.

Settling a claim before reaching MMI may result in an underestimation of future medical expenses and the long-term impact of injuries. By waiting until this status is achieved, the settlement process can more accurately account for all present and potential future medical costs, providing a more comprehensive and fair resolution for the injured party.

Degree of Liability

The degree of liability in a personal injury case significantly influences the time required for settlement. Clear and uncontested liability can speed up negotiations, leading to a swifter resolution.

Conversely, disputes or uncertainties regarding fault can result in prolonged negotiations, investigations, or even legal proceedings.

Policy Limits

The limits of the responsible party’s insurance policy are a crucial factor in the settlement process. If the damages exceed these policy limits, the settlement may be delayed as parties navigate how to address the shortfall. Understanding and negotiating within these policy limits is essential to ensure a fair and timely resolution.

Personal Injury Settlement Payment Process

Typically, the resolution of a personal injury case results in the issuance of a payment by the responsible party’s insurance provider. This payment, usually in the form of a check, is made for the entire settlement amount and is payable to both the plaintiff and their attorney.

Upon receipt, the plaintiff’s attorney deposits the funds into a secure trust account. The attorney’s fee is then taken from the settlement. This fee includes their payment and any case-related expenses that might have been necessary for procuring the settlement.

Once this is taken care of, the remaining balance is given to you.

Allocation of Settlement Funds

The total settlement amount is itemized to compensate for specific damages sustained by the plaintiff. These damages include medical expenses (both past and future), lost income, property repair or replacement costs, pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of enjoyment of everyday life, and emotional distress. The settlement breakdown outlines the amount awarded for each damage type, guiding the distribution of funds.

Liens and Debt Repayment

Once the settlement has been reached, the plaintiff’s attorney ensures everyone gets paid. Generally, this will involve issuing payments to insurance providers and hospitals that were owed money during your treatment.

Periodic Payment Options

While lump sum payments are conventional, certain cases, especially those involving severe and long-term injuries, may benefit from structured settlements. Structured settlements offer a customized payout schedule, ensuring guaranteed payments over time.

This arrangement is particularly advantageous for individuals facing ongoing medical treatments, rehabilitation, and extended loss of earnings. Additionally, structured settlements may carry tax benefits.

Contact Durham Law Firm Today

While it is never easy trying to get financial compensation for an injury, it helps to have an experienced personal injury lawyer in your corner. Personal injury law is complex. The best way to maximize your odds of receiving the compensation you deserve is to have someone with the right experience take your case.

At the Benjamin Durham Law Firm, we have helped many people with their personal injury claims. Contact us today so we can explain how settlements work and give you an idea of what it will take to receive your money.

Author Bio

Benjamin Durham is the principal attorney and founder of Benjamin Durham Law Firm, a criminal defense law firm based in Las Vegas, NV. With over 20 years of experience in the legal field, he represents clients in both injury and criminal cases. Over his career, he has secured favorable verdicts for clients in both state and federal courts and successfully defended numerous high-profile prosecutions.

Ben’s exceptional legal skills and dedication to his clients have earned him recognition as a life member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He also has been honored as one of the Top 100 trial lawyers by the National Trial Lawyers Association, further solidifying his reputation as a top-notch legal practitioner.

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