How Long Do Truck Accident Cases Take to Settle in Kentucky?
If you have been injured or are dealing with a damaged vehicle after a truck accident in Kentucky, it may be difficult to wait to receive a settlement check. It is crucial, however, not to rush the settlement process. Jumping to accept the first offer could lock you into an inadequate settlement. Knowing how long the average truck accident case takes can help you know what to expect during the legal process.
Settlement vs. Truck Accident Trial
The vast majority of motor vehicle accident cases in Kentucky reach settlements. Kentucky is a no-fault car insurance state, meaning most car accident cases are resolved quickly with first-party claims. This is a claim brought with the driver’s own insurance provider, regardless of fault for the crash. Even if a crash victim can bring a claim against another driver – such as for serious injuries that meet the state’s threshold – the odds are high that it will reach a settlement.
Settlements are agreements made between an accident victim and an insurance company to resolve the legal dispute for a specified amount of money. Since neither party wants to go to trial, they can typically come to a compromise that works for both of them outside of court. Settlements are faster than jury trials; they typically take six months to a year from start to finish, unless there is an issue such as a liability dispute.
There’s a chance, however, that a truck accident claim in Kentucky will have to go to trial. If the insurance company refutes liability, rejects the claim or refuses to offer a reasonable settlement, a trial may be required to fight for fair compensation for the crash victim. In this situation, the case could take one to two years or longer to be resolved. The timeline for a jury trial will depend on factors such as how busy the courthouse is and the length of the discovery period that is necessary for an investigation.
Factors That Can Affect a Truck Accident Claim Timeline
Whether or not a truck accident case goes to trial is not the only thing that can impact its timeline. Several elements factor into the length of a claim, including:
- Quality of the evidence. If it is difficult for either party to collect evidence or determine fault for the truck accident during an investigation, the discovery phase may take longer.
- Number of defendants. A case involving multiple defendants could lead to a liability dispute that makes it take longer for the case to be resolved.
- Injury severity. Truck accident claims often involve catastrophic injuries, which can lengthen the victim’s recovery period and the process of settlement negotiations for a fair amount.
- Maximum medical improvement. How long it takes the victim to reach the point where he or she is no longer expected to recover from the injury further can delay a claim. It is important to wait for this point, however, so the plaintiff understands the full extent of the injury.
You may be eager to receive a settlement after a devastating truck accident, but you must resist quickly accepting the first settlement offer. The first offer is often far less than a claimant deserves. Instead, take your time and negotiate the value of your settlement with help from an attorney.
How an Attorney Can Help
Every truck accident case is 100 percent unique. The best way to estimate how long your claim might take is by consulting with an experienced attorney. A lawyer at Hendy | Johnson | Vaughn | Emery can help you resolve your legal dispute as quickly, efficiently and successfully as possible. The trucking company and its insurance provider will be more likely to respond to your claim quickly and fairly with a lawyer by your side. Call (502) 540-5700 to start with a free case consultation.