No two dog bite cases are ever the same, so it’s hard to say how long it will take for your specific dog bite case to settle. Various factors determine how long it takes for you to settle your claim. It can take anywhere from months and even several years to settle.
If you want to increase the odds of settling a lot faster, you will need strong legal representation to do so. Our dog bite lawyers can help you fight for your claim at the negotiating table or in court. Call the law office of John Foy & Associates to get a free case review at no risk or obligation to you. You can reach us.
Georgia’s Two-Year Statute of Limitations for Dog Bites
You have just two years to file a claim for your dog bite injury according to the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA) §9-3-33. Depending on how long it takes for you to start filing your claim, settling can take many months or even a year. Therefore, you should always strive to build a solid case for your claim as soon as possible.
Timeline for Reaching a Settlement in a Dog Bite Case
Here is a basic timeline of what you can expect when pursuing financial compensation from the dog owner for your damages.
Gathering Evidence and Seeking Medical Treatment
Before filing a claim, you need to gather as much evidence as possible to show that your dog bite injuries resulted in your damages. In addition, the evidence you collect will also establish negligence and fault against the owner of the dog that bit you. This is a critical step in recovering compensation that takes roughly a week or two.
Afterward, you will need to seek medical treatment. Treatment for dog bite injuries varies depending on severity, but usually, it can take several months to heal from moderate dog bites completely. Therefore, you will want to complete medical treatment thoroughly to factor in all of your expenses as damages in your settlement.
Consulting with an Attorney and Filing a Claim
Once all of your medical treatment gets finished and you have all of your evidence gathered, contact an attorney to get started on filing your claim. Before filing, your attorney will go over all the facts and details about your dog bite case. Then, they will calculate all of your damages, consult with experts, and collect additional evidence if necessary.
Afterward, paperwork will get filed to start the claims process. All of this can take several weeks to complete on average.
Negotiating with the Insurance Company
Negotiating with insurance companies is difficult because they will often dispute your claim and try to get out of paying you a fair amount of compensation that reflects all of your damages. After all, they are businesses at the end of the day and will only seek to protect their bottom line instead of doing the right thing.
When you have strong lawyers representing you, such as the ones from John Foy & Associates, most insurance companies will settle faster than usual because they don’t want to run the risk of a drawn-out court battle. As a result, we will usually settle out of court on your behalf within a month, give or take.
If Your Case Heads to Trial
Should your claim remain unresolved and have to go to trial, it can take several months and even years to settle. We will try to avoid trial for this reason, but we won’t hesitate to fight for your claim in court if it’s required.
Courts are notorious for taking a long time to resolve a case. This is because of how busy the court systems are year-round. So if your case heads to trial, you should expect a long wait before you settle.
Most Cases Will Settle Out of Court
Millions of dog bites occur each year in the U.S., and the vast majority of claims filed for them will settle out of court. So while court cases do take a long time, don’t stress too much about it, as the chances that your claim will escalate to that point are fairly low.
Remember, insurance companies don’t want to go through a long, drawn-out legal battle either. They’d instead rather just go through negotiations out of court and settle from there. If you have a strong lawyer by your side, this process won’t take as long as you may think it will.
How Long Will It Take to Settle My Georgia Dog Bite Case?
To answer generally how long it takes for negotiations to conclude and a claim to settle, it can take up to three months on average. Remember, this is just a general estimate, and you shouldn’t expect your case to follow this same timeframe. It can take longer and even shorter than three months to receive compensation.
We can guarantee that it will take much longer to settle without the assistance of a lawyer. Navigating through Georgia’s personal injury laws alone can take up precious time you don’t have. Consult with one of our lawyers today to get your settlement a lot faster.
If you want the most accurate estimate on how long it will take for your dog bite claim to settle, please schedule an appointment for a free case review with our dog bite attorneys. We will go over the facts of your case and let you know if we can help and how long it should take us to get you the compensation you deserve.
Can You Shorten the Time It Takes to Settle a Dog Bite Injury Case in Georgia?
Unfortunately, fighting for a settlement is going to take a bit of time. While we can’t tell you the exact amount of time needed since every case is different, just know that there are no alternatives around it. Don’t expect an extremely fast turnaround time if you want to win a settlement that reflects the damages you suffered.
Insurance companies like to exploit dog bite victims and their desire for fast compensation. If they try to offer you a quick settlement, don’t accept it. They’re trying to get you to accept their lowball offer so they can get away paying you less. It’s always worth the wait to win the maximum amount of compensation available for your dog bite claim.
Get Help with Your Dog Bite Injury Claim Today
While hiring a lawyer isn’t mandatory, not doing so can drag the negotiations process out longer than it has to be. Even the playing field and get help winning a settlement today with the dog bite lawyers here at John Foy & Associates. Call our law office today to learn more about how we can help.