After you suffer the devastation an 18-wheeler accident can cause, you will likely have several concerns. Common concerns of truck collision victims include worries about money, anxiety about how well they will heal from their injuries, and agonizing over recovering their damages from the truck driver or insurance company. With all these concerns swirling, you are likely thinking, How long does an 18-wheeler lawsuit take? A trucking accident lawsuit can take a handful of months or several years. The length of time you might have to spend in litigation or negotiations depends on the specific facts of your case.
At Harris Law Firm, we can help ensure you receive the maximum compensation available in a reasonable amount of time. We are seasoned and sophisticated truck accident attorneys who constantly seek the best outcomes for our clients.
What Affects a Truck Accident Lawsuit Timeline the Most?
In the aftermath of a trucking accident, there are many steps you should take to protect your physical and mental health, financial well-being, and legal interests. These steps include the following (often in this order):
- Seeking medical attention immediately and regularly;
- Consulting with an attorney;
- Filing and obtaining a copy of the accident report;
- Submitting a claim to the insurance company;
- Gathering evidence, including witness information;
- Initiating settlement negotiations; and
- Filing a civil lawsuit.
The outcomes of taking some of these steps can increase the time it will take to properly adjudicate your claim.
Your Healthcare Needs Can Affect Your Timeline
How long does an 18-wheeler case take? Sometimes the answer to that question depends on what your doctor has to say. Truck accidents can cause myriad severe injuries, including the following:
- Broken bones,
- Back injuries,
- Neck injuries,
- Damage to internal organs, and
- Traumatic brain injuries.
Your healthcare needs and permanent impairment that result from an 18-wheeler accident determine a significant amount of your damages.
To make sure you receive all the compensation you are owed, you should wait until you reach maximum medical improvement (MMI) from your injuries before you adjudicate your complaint. MMI means that your condition has improved as much as possible, and you are stable. The amount of time it will take for you to reach MMI depends on the nature and severity of your injury. For instance, some individuals heal from traumatic brain injuries in a matter of months, while others take years to recover.
The Procedural Aspects of a Lawsuit Can Affect Your Timeline
When you are ready to file a lawsuit against an at-fault driver, you should know that court cases typically do not conclude quickly. After you file your complaint, you and the other party will likely engage in discovery (which is the gathering of evidence from your opponent) and schedule your hearing date with the court. This process can add months to the length of your case. And once you have completed your arguments before a judge or jury, you might have to wait a substantial amount of time before you receive a determination.
How Long Does It Take to Settle a Car Accident Lawsuit with a Truck?
While settlement can be a quicker way to address a trucking accident claim, your case can still take months to years to resolve. In a settlement, you should take the time to gather all the evidence you can and seek all the treatment you will need to reach MMI. Insurance companies are notorious for finding ways to avoid liability in claims, and cutting your medical care, or the time it takes to collect evidence, short gives an insurer a way to argue that your claim is worth less than it is. As long as the statute of limitations is not about to expire in your case, you should take your time to negotiate the best settlement possible.
What Is the Statute of Limitations for a Truck Accident Lawsuit?
You have three years to file a truck accident lawsuit. And if you want to settle your claim, you need to initiate negotiations within this timeframe. Navigating the timing of your case is a tricky matter. You do not want to sue or settle too soon because early adjudication could rob you of compensation to which you are entitled. And you do not want to wait too long to resolve your claim because you could be barred from recovery by the statute of limitations. To avoid timing issues in your case, speak to an experienced attorney immediately.
Talk to Harris Law Firm Today
So, how long does a truck accident lawsuit take? The answer is different for each victim. Our knowledgeable truck accident attorneys at Harris Law Firm can time your case properly and maximize your damages. We have over 40 years of experience, and we passionately serve the people of Mississippi. You can call us at 662-335-4171 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.