How Long Does it Take to Get a Settlement Check From a Car Accident in Miami, FL?
May 16, 2022 | Sagi Shaked | Car Accidents
Getting a settlement check from an insurance company seems to take forever in some cases. However, Florida insurance laws require companies to pay an insurance claim within 20 days of signing a final settlement agreement.
Most of the time between your car accident and receiving a settlement check is spent healing from your injuries and negotiating a settlement with the insurance company. The facts and circumstances of the case will affect the settlement timeline. Continue reading to learn more.
What Happens After I File an Insurance Claim for a Car Accident in Miami?
Florida requires drivers to have no-fault Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance coverage. PIP coverage pays for a portion of your medical bills and lost wages after a car accident, regardless of who caused the crash.
However, you can pursue a claim against the driver who caused the car accident if you sustained serious injuries. Filing an insurance claim with the other driver’s bodily injury liability insurance provider could provide more compensation for damages. However, this coverage is optional in Florida, so not all drivers have it.
Bodily injury liability insurance can compensate an injured party for economic damages, including lost wages, out-of-pocket expenses, and medical bills. It may also compensate the victim for non-economic damages or “pain and suffering” damages.
However, you have the burden of proving that the driver caused the accident and the accident caused your injuries. You also must prove the extent and value of your damages.
The insurance company may dispute fault or raise various defenses to reduce the value of your claim, such as:
Your Miami car accident lawyer will investigate the cause of the accident, gather evidence, and present a strong case to the insurance company to prove fault. In most cases, attorneys settle car accident claims through settlement negotiations instead of going to court.
However, your attorney will not settle your claim until you complete medical treatment. Permanent impairments increase the value of your claim, but you will not know the extent of your impairments until your doctor releases you from care. Therefore, the extent of your injuries and the duration of your recovery significantly impact when you receive a settlement check for a car accident in Miami.
What Happens After I Settle a Car Accident Claim in Miami?
All parties must sign a settlement agreement before the insurance company pays the claim. The company must pay the settlement amount within 20 days after everyone signs the agreement. However, it may take several weeks for you to receive your check.
Funds Must Clear Before Disbursement
Your car accident lawyer will deposit the settlement check in a trust account. The funds are held in the account until they clear the bank. It typically takes a few days for large amounts to be available for disbursement.
Payments of Liens and Costs
Your attorney must pay any outstanding medical bills, medical liens, and subrogation claims before disbursing any funds to you. An experienced personal injury lawyer negotiates with medical providers and health insurance companies to reduce the amount of their liens to put as much money in your pocket as possible. It could take several weeks to negotiate and pay the liens.
The attorney also deducts their attorneys’ fees from the settlement proceeds. Most injury lawyers accept car accident cases on a contingency fee basis. You and your lawyer agree to the fee when you retain the law firm.
Law firms also reimburse themselves for the costs of the case. The costs depend on the case, but generally include postage, deposition fees, fees to obtain records, expert witness fees, and filing fees.
You Receive a Net Settlement Check
The attorney will issue you a net settlement check after deducting all costs, fees, and liens.
Factors That Affect How Long it Takes to Settle a Car Accident Claim in Miami
We discussed a few factors that impact a car accident case timeline above.
Other factors that impact the time it takes to get your money after a car accident include:
- The duration of your recovery period
- The parties involved in the car accident case
- Whether the insurance company disputes liability
- The time it takes to complete an accident investigation
- The complexity of the case
- The willingness of the other parties to negotiate a fair settlement
The insurance company for the other driver is not interested in paying a fair settlement. The company prefers to deny your claim outright. If it cannot find a reason to deny your claim, it will try to reduce the amount it pays to settle the claim.
Before settling a car accident claim, take advantage of a free consultation with a personal injury lawyer to ensure you receive all of the money you deserve.