Your Lawsuit: What to Expect
Portland Personal Injury Lawyer Bryan Dawson: Introduction for New Clients
Dawson Law Group: New Cases
Starting Oregon Claims and Lawsuits
During the initial consultation for prospective plaintiffs’ cases, we find one of the most pressing questions people have is what to expect when pursuing an Oregon personal injury claim. Like a lot of legal questions, the answer can vary a lot depending on the specific circumstances of your case. However, we think it’s important for our clients to understand the bird’s-eye-view of the standard personal injury claim so they have a better idea of what to expect. With that in mind, here is the anatomy of a personal injury claim:
There are two primary phases to an Oregon personal injury claim: 1) pre-litigation, and 2) post-litigation.
So what does that mean?
The pre-litigation phase is when you submit a claim to the other driver’s (or negligent party’s) insurance company, which then evaluates what your claim is worth. That insurance company will look at how similar cases have resolved in front of juries and possibly make a settlement offer based on that evaluation. We should note that, due to the complexity of injury and healing processes, we don’t recommend negotiating with an insurance company until the full scope of your injuries are understood by a medical professional and you have finished treating for those injuries.
During the pre-litigation phase, we will collect and synthesize all the records needed to support your claim. We will also handle communications among the insurance companies, medical providers and any other parties that might be involved.
After the full scope of your case is understood, we will make a demand on the insurance company. This will start the negotiation phase of settling your case. Click the following link to learn more about Negotiating with Insurance Companies. If we can’t reach a settlement then we will begin work on the second phase of your case, the litigation phase. It’s important to note that a lawsuit must be filed within two years of the accident.
Litigation simply means the process of filing a lawsuit and proceeding through Court. Once you file a lawsuit the court system will dictate the timing of the case. Most Oregon Circuit Courts will require that a resolution be reached within a year. If the lawsuit is for $50,000 or less, then the case must be arbitrated within six months of filing. The endpoint of litigation is having a trial in front of a jury. A case can also settle during the litigation phase but it’s best to prepare as if the case is going to trial.
Time Limits in Oregon Lawsuits
It is important to know about time limits. There are many rules about when certain legal notices must be accomplished. Most basic of all are statutes of limitations, which require different types of actions to be filed by certain time deadlines. Here are some of the rules governing Oregon personal injury and loss lawsuits:
Oregon Civil Statutes of Limitation*
|Personal Injury||2 Years, with additional for some minors|
|Wrongful Death||3 Years|
|Property Damage, Most Contracts||6 years|
|*Note: These limits have nuances.||Call us today at 503-919-1315.|
Your Personal Injury Lawyers in Portland
Part of our job as your personal injury lawyers is fully preparing and advising you on each step of this process. As the client, you will be the one making the ultimate decision, but it’s our job to provide you with the information and advice to make the best decision. If you would like more information about what to expect or want a free evaluation of you case, please call Bryan or Ben at 503-919-1315.
Lawsuits and legal claims are inherently stressful for everybody involved, but especially for the people who are the named parties. This is particularly true when the claims and suits involve wrongful death or personal injury.
From our long experience as Oregon injury lawyers, we can best help you deal with your legal stress by starting you off with our distinctive case analysis and advice, as well as by delivering a smart, muscular and efficient handling of your Oregon claim or lawsuit. But we can also help you with the stress by letting you know that it’s entirely normal and all but unavoidable.
Lawsuits and legal claims are adversarial, involve immensely meaningful but not entirely predictable events and outcomes, and often take some time to resolve. Hence, the stress.
We consider it a central part of our job as your Portland injury attorneys to make your experience as low-stress as possible. We want you to win, and we want you to do so with maximum peace of mind. We always keep this in mind as we develop and pursue your case.
If you are interested in reading more about what psychiatrists know about the stress of claims and litigation, take a look at this report:
Mental Health and Legal Disputes
Written by: Larry H. Strasburger, M.D.