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How Long Does It Take to Settle a Semi-Truck Accident Claim?

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Trucking collisions are typically much more severe and complex than other types of crashes. As a result, truck accident injury claims typically take longer to settle than crashes involving only passenger vehicles. How long does it take to settle a semi-truck accident claim? Scroll down to find out.

Factors Impacting the Duration of a Truck Accident Settlement

How long does it take to settle a semi-truck accident claim? The answer varies from case to case. Most competent attorneys will hesitate to provide you with an estimate of the time it will take. This is because trucking collision claims can be complex. Most trucking carriers have insurance companies that aggressively litigate against injury claims and work to either settle for as little as possible or to avoid paying anything in claims.

The following factors can affect the duration of a settlement:

  • Available evidence – If you have substantial evidence supporting the truck driver’s liability, the settlement process could be faster since the insurance company will be more likely to want to avoid risking a loss at trial. If you have less evidence, or the evidence is hard to obtain, the process can take longer.
  • Severity of your injuries – If your injuries are relatively minor, the settlement process will likely be faster than if you were seriously injured. This is because you will need to reach maximum medical improvement to understand your future medical expenses, which are a part of the value of your case. Serious injury claims are typically worth more money, which means the insurance company is more likely to fight harder against them.
  • Whether others contributed fault – Claims involving multiple potentially liable defendants take longer to investigate and resolve than those that only involve two parties.
  • Whether you are trying to represent yourself – Some people attempt to handle their truck accident claims themselves, but trucking carriers and their insurers will typically not engage in good-faith negotiations with those who are representing themselves. You are much more likely to achieve a successful resolution of your claim if you hire a competent truck accident lawyer.
  • Your attorney’s experience – While hiring an attorney is better than attempting to go it alone, it’s also important to choose an attorney with substantial experience in handling trucking collision claims. This is because an experienced truck accident lawyer will know the strategies defense lawyers typically raise and be prepared to combat them. They will also know how to investigate a truck accident claim and where to look for evidence.
  • The length of the insurance company’s investigation In general, insurers in Missouri must complete their investigations within 30 days of receiving a claim. However, the insurance company can extend this period in writing if they are unable to complete it within that time. Trucking accidents are typically complex and might take longer than 30 days to investigate.

A Note About Early Settlement Offers

In some cases, severely injured truck accident victims will receive fast settlement offers from the trucking company’s insurer. If you receive a fast offer, you should be careful before accepting it. A common tactic insurance companies use is to make early, lowball offers to accident victims. They do this for a few reasons, including trying to convince the victims their claims are worth much less than they are and attempting to take advantage when injured victims are facing financial pressures from medical bills and lost income.

If you accept an early settlement offer that is lower than what your claim is worth, you will not be able to return later and ask for more money. If you have other injuries that appear later, or you find that your medical bills and other losses are much higher than you thought, you’ll have to pay for those costs yourself instead of being able to get money from the trucking company or its insurer.

Make sure to consult a truck accident lawyer when you receive a fast settlement offer. An attorney can evaluate your case, review the facts and evidence, and explain whether you should negotiate for a higher amount.

Consult a Truck Accident Attorney

After suffering injuries in a collision caused by a semi-truck, you should seek medical care immediately. Follow the instructions you receive from your doctor, and keep all of your appointments. Once you have sought and received care, contact The Law Offices of Bryan Musgrave to schedule a free consultation. We can explain whether your claim has legal merits and discuss your next steps. Call us today to schedule a consultation at 417-322-2222 or contact us online.

Files under: Personal Injury