It could take a long time to settle your car accident claim. The insurance company for the negligent driver could use many tactics to deny your claim or try to pay you less compensation than you deserve for your injuries.
When you finally reach a settlement, you will be anxious to receive your check. Unfortunately, you will not get it immediately because you must complete several final steps before the insurance company releases your payment.
What Are the Final Steps in an Auto Collision Settlement?
Understanding what steps must be completed before you receive your settlement check can make the wait easier. You should not settle your claim or sign any legal documents without first consulting with an experienced car accident lawyer. They will also ensure that the insurance adjuster is doing what they are supposed to do to finalize your settlement.
It could take up to four to eight weeks before the process is completed. Here are the steps that you can expect to happen:
- Release. Before the insurance company writes your check, they require you to sign a release of all claims form. In this legal document, you would agree to accept the settlement amount and to waive any claim for future compensation. It could take several weeks for the insurance company to draft the release and revisions proposed by your attorney to be made.
- Check. After the signed release is sent to the insurance company, they will issue your check. Depending on their procedures, it could take a week or two for them to do this and send the payment to your attorney.
- Check Deposit. Upon receipt, your lawyer will deposit the check into a client trust account (required by law). Once the check clears, the funds are ready for distribution, in which your legal and medical expenses will be paid from the settlement amount. Here is how it works:
- Attorney fees. First, the attorney fees will be calculated on the total (gross) settlement amount. The attorney fees and litigation costs are paid from the settlement amount.
- Expenses. Next, your attorney will pay any medical liens and other bills you owe.
- Your payment. The last step in the process of settling your claim is to send you your check for the balance, which represents your client proceeds (i.e. take home amount). Along with your check, you will receive an itemized statement showing each expense, and exactly what was paid out of the settlement. This will include invoices paid so you have a complete record of everything. Once you receive your check and itemized statement, your case will finally be completed.
Were you injured in an auto collision in Roswell, Carlsbad, Artesia, or Southeast New Mexico? Our knowledgeable and dedicated car accident legal team is here to explain your options to you and go up against the insurance company so that you receive all the compensation you deserve in your settlement.
We handle these cases on a contingency fee basis, which means you owe us no attorney fees until we win your case. To schedule your free, no-obligation case evaluation, call our Roswell office or fill out our contact form today.
Download this FREE brief how-to guide that explains in easy-to-understand terms the most important aspects of your car accident case. With clear examples in each chapter, you will be given specific tips and strategies to help you know what steps to take and how to take them, and just as importantly, you will learn what NOT to do.