Slip and fall accidents can cause significant physical and emotional harm, not to mention the ongoing strain of medical bills and lost wages. It’s no wonder that you’re anxious to know when you can expect to receive your settlement check to help ease your financial burden. For answers specific to your case, it’s essential to seek the advice of a slip and fall lawyer in Houston for more insight into the process of receiving a settlement check.
What Is a Legal Settlement?
A legal settlement is an alternative to taking a civil lawsuit to trial. It is a compensation payment that happens with the defendant agrees to part or all of a plaintiff’s claim. By reaching a settlement, both parties agree to end the litigation matter and avoid going to trial.
Typically, a settlement involves the accused party paying a sum of money to the victim. The compensation goes towards medical bills, emotional and physical distress, lost wages, lost consortium, and ongoing pain and suffering. It is meant to help the victim live a productive life. Reaching a legal settlement, often called settling out of court, can be advantageous to both the plaintiff and the defendant as it can bring the legal proceedings to an end without going to trial.
What Are the Steps in Receiving a Personal Injury Settlement Check?
Once you’ve reached a settlement agreement, you are probably understandably anxious to receive the check and wonder how long you have to wait. Understanding the steps involved in receiving a personal injury settlement check can help you manage your expectations and prepare accordingly:
Signing a Release Form
Before the defendant’s insurance provider can issue a settlement check, you must sign a release form. The release form states that you won’t pursue further legal actions against the defendant for the injuries you’ve sustained. The release protects the defendant from potential future lawsuits related to the same incident.
It’s essential to review the release carefully and understand the terms before signing it. A personal injury lawyer can help you understand the terms of the release before signing it. Conferring with your lawyer can help you understand the release’s implications and ensure that it protects your rights adequately.
Once you’ve signed the release, the defendant’s insurer will process the document and issue a settlement check. In most cases, the insurance company will send the settlement check to your personal injury attorney. The settlement check is payable in your name and your attorney’s name.
It’s crucial to note that the processing time for the release can vary based on the insurance company’s internal procedures. Your attorney can follow up with the insurance company to ensure that they process the release promptly.
Deducting Legal Fees and Expenses
With many slip and fall lawyers, you won’t pay anything upfront because they work on a contingency basis. Instead, a portion of the final settlement will be allocated towards paying the legal fees. These may include additional expenses, such as the cost of a private investigator, expert witness fees, court reporting costs, and hours attached to your case.
It’s essential to discuss the legal fees with your lawyer upfront and understand how they will be calculated. This can help you avoid any surprises when you receive your settlement check. It’s also important to note that your attorney may need to use a portion of the settlement amount to pay outstanding debts or liens related to your case. Discussing any unpaid liens or debts with your lawyer in advance can help you prepare accordingly.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Settlement Check?
Once a settlement has been reached, the defendant’s insurance provider will typically issue a settlement check within four to six weeks. However, there are some exceptions, and delays can happen. It is essential to work with your attorney to help you understand the process and address any potential issues.
If you don’t receive your check within the expected timeline, there may be reasons for the delay. For example, the insurance company could delay sending the check. Once they are prepared to send it, weekends and holidays can prevent checks from being issued as quickly as expected. Banks may hold large amounts of money for several days to verify the legitimacy of the check, which can cause more delays.
Working With an Experienced Slip and Fall Lawyer in Houston
Working with an experienced attorney can help ensure that your case is handled professionally and efficiently, up to and including handling the settlement check, and a knowledgeable lawyer can help you make sure that all necessary steps are taken to expedite your payment. For more information, click here.
While the timeline for receiving settlement payments can vary depending on multiple factors, your attorney will know all the tricks to expedite the process. By following your attorney’s advice and working together, you can help ensure that everything goes smoothly.