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How Long Does It Take To Settle A Semi-Truck Accident?

Posted on May 20, 2021 in

Truck accidents can result in severe damage and significant financial hardship. In these situations, you may file a lawsuit against the driver, his or her employer, the manufacturer of a defective part, or another liable party to collect compensation for your injuries. Depending on the severity of the crash, your Oregon truck accident case may settle within a few months up to one or two years.

How Long Does It Take To Settle A Semi-Truck Accident?

Reaching Maximum Medical Improvement

After a truck accident, you may have severe injuries that require extensive medical attention. Your lawyer will want to wait until you reach maximum medical improvement (MMI) before initiating your truck accident case. It is important to wait until you reach MMI because you may not have a clear picture of your injuries or long-term needs early on in your case. You may inadvertently accept an insufficient settlement if you file too early.

By waiting to file until you reach MMI, your attorney will understand the full extent of your injuries and damages and will be able to advocate for the highest possible award. Depending on the severity of your injuries, it may take a few weeks up to several months until you reach this stage.

During this time, your attorney will begin conducting a thorough investigation into your accident. This may involve collecting evidence, reviewing your medical records, and speaking to experts who can provide testimony on your behalfs, such as healthcare providers or accident reconstruction specialists.

The Truck Accident Lawsuit Process

Once you reach MMI, your attorney will initiate your truck accident lawsuit. He or she will decide whether to send an initial demand letter to the at-fault party. This letter will detail your intent to file a lawsuit and the compensation you seek. It will also request the at-fault party to attend negotiations. If these negotiations are successful, your case may settle during this stage.

If you do not attend negotiations or the negotiations are unsuccessful, your attorney will file your lawsuit in Oregon civil court. Your case may settle at multiple stages of the lawsuit process.

  • After filing your lawsuit, you and your lawyer will enter the discovery phase. During discovery, you and the at-fault party will exchange documents and take depositions of relevant parties. The discovery process may take six months to one year to complete.
  • Once discovery is complete, you and the at-fault party may choose to enter negotiation or mediation. If these discussions are successful, your case will settle before going to the courtroom.
  • If you do not attend mediation or negotiation, or if these discussions are unsuccessful, your case will go to court. During the trial, the court will review the evidence and listen to arguments from both parties. The court will then decide if you are eligible for compensation and how much your award should be. If your trial is successful, you should receive a payment within one or two months.

Hire an Attorney for Your Truck Accident Case

Many factors can impact the length of a truck accident case, including unclear liability, severe injuries, and very high amounts of compensation. Failure to hire an attorney can also lengthen your case timeline. Without a lawyer, navigating negotiations can be difficult and errors may delay your case.

With an attorney, however, you will have an advocate who will fight to achieve maximum compensation as swiftly as possible. Contact a Portland truck accident lawyer to discuss your optimal path to recovery.