A personal injury claim can be stressful. However well you think you have presented your case, it’s hard to know if it will succeed. Yet you know that you really need that final payment so that you can cope with bills that you never expected.
Serious injuries can be financially damaging and it can be frustrating knowing that you were not to blame for an accident, yet are unsure whether the at-fault party will be made to account for their actions.
If negotiations stall, your attorney may recommend filing a lawsuit and it’s then up to the civil court to decide on the outcome. What can you do when everything is up to the judge to decide? Here are some tips to help.
Tip#1: Don’t Get Impatient
Personal injury claims can be decided quite quickly or they may drag on for months, even years, if the facts are contentious. Once everything has been presented to court and you have attended court appearances with your attorney faithfully, there is very little you can actually do to influence the process.
Stay as patient as you can until a decision is made, but in the meantime be prepared with a plan B.
Tip#2: Keep All Your Records Intact
If the judge decides in your favor, all well and good, but if the claim is denied or part of the claim is denied, then your attorney may advise that you appeal the decision. In that case, everything you have already submitted: documents detailing how much you have had to pay, how much you may still have to pay for medical treatment, the loss of earnings you have suffered, the transport costs that you have had to pay should all be available.
Tip#3: Make Sure You are Prompt for Any Court Appearances
One of the reasons why it can take a long time for a judge to make a decision about your case is that the court that is dealing with it has a very busy schedule. There may be many other cases which must be heard before yours is scheduled.
In the meantime, there may be a request for you to appear for a meeting at the court. If you really can’t go then make sure that the court has sufficient notice so that the meeting can be rescheduled, but otherwise do make sure that you turn up on time and are prepared with any documents that have been requested.
Tip#4: Keep in Regular Contact With Your Attorney
Your attorney will have dealt with many previous cases and will know why a particular case is taking longer to resolve than others. It is a good idea to keep in regular contact with your attorney so that you can keep abreast of developments.
As with the judge, attorneys are also normally very busy and if you do arrange to meet with him or her, ensure that you are prompt for meetings.