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How long does a personal injury case typically take?

Every person, every car accident, every slip and fall is different. Some of us are old. Some of us are young. Some of us have preexisting medical conditions. Some of us are 100 percent healthy and fine. No attorney in Maryland can guarantee or state with any certainty how long a personal injury case will take.

Before we do anything else in a personal injury case, the client needs to get the necessary medical treatment. There is no timetable on how quickly an injured person will respond to medical treatment. This all depends on the injuries you sustained and your ability to bounce back. For example, if you have a spinal or disc injury, your recovery time will most likely be much longer than a client with a strained muscle.

There are many different ways a person can get the necessary medical care he or she needs after a traumatic injury. If a person does not have health insurance or is unsure of where to start, our law firm can answer any questions and help get that person on the road to recovery.

It is critical that the client reaches a certain level of recovery before finalizing a personal injury case. You never want to settle a claim or file suit until your client is at least static or has reached MMI (Maximum Medical Improvement). You never want to settle a claim and then a year later you realize that your client did in fact have a traumatic brain injury. That client can’t ever go back to the auto insurance company and ask for more money. At that point, your client has signed a release and agreed to a settlement of $20,000. That is how much he or she will get, end of story.

For this reason, it is impossible to say how long a “typical” personal injury case will take. It could take anywhere from 90 days to three years. You just never know. It depends on many factors:

  • How bad was the accident?
  • How much treatment does the client need?
  • How injured is the client?
  • What was the physical condition of the client prior to the accident?

In addition to the question of recovery time, there is also the question of which court will handle the case. Not every case is taken to trial. Many cases are settled if the insurance company makes an offer that satisfies the client. A settlement is naturally the quicker route, but this does not necessarily mean it is the better route. It depends on the case. If we have to file suit or take a case to trial, the process will take longer. There are two levels of court for personal injuries in Maryland: the district court and circuit court. Which court you go to depends on how injured you are and how high your medical bills are. The district court has a rather a quick turnaround. In the circuit court, your case would likely be tried by a jury, and it could take up to a year from that point. Contact the experienced attorneys at DuBoff & Associates, Chartered to find out how we can help you.