If you or somebody you love has been injured or sustained property damage caused by the negligent actions of another driver in Georgia, you should be able to recover compensation for your losses. However, even after your claim is settled with the other driver’s insurance carrier, you need to know how long it will take for you to get your settlement check.
First, How Long Will it Take a Claim to Settle?
Getting a settlement check is the culmination of the entire process of a car accident claim. Unfortunately, the claims process can be lengthy.
The ultimate goal after a car accident occurs is for victims to receive a settlement check for their injuries and property damage within a few weeks after the incident occurs. However, this only usually happens if the case is very cut and dry. This means that the at-fault party is clearly liable, and there is no denying it. In reality, there is often a dispute over who caused the accident or whether or not there was any shared fault, and this can lengthen the time it takes for a car accident claim to settle.
It could take months or even years for a car accident claim to settle. If the insurance carrier denies the claim or continues to refuse to offer a fair settlement to a crash victim, it may be necessary for a case to go all the way to trial. Sometimes, trials do not occur until years after the crash happens.
How Long After Settlement Until the Check Comes In?
The good news is that after the car accident claim finally settles, whether that is through discussions with an insurance carrier or as a result of a jury verdict handed down at trial, it will not take long for the settlement check to arrive.
After the claim is settled and the paperwork is signed, the settlement check will typically be processed quickly. Now, where this check goes will depend on whether or not the car accident victim had representation from an attorney. If an attorney was used in the case, they would be the ones to receive the settlement check. An attorney will typically then take their contingency fee out of the total settlement, pay any outstanding medical bills on behalf of the client, and send the rest of the money directly to their client.
Will You Have to Pay Taxes on the Settlement?
Taxes seem inevitable in every facet of life. However, when it comes to a personal injury settlement after a car accident, the good news is that most of the proceeds will not be taxed by the IRS or the state government. Any of the settlement that goes towards paying for a person’s injury expenses (including hospital and doctor bills as well as pain and suffering losses) will not be taxed.
However, portions of a car accident settlement used to pay for lost wages will be taxed at the regular tax bracket you are already in. That is because last wage settlements are replacing the income that you would have received anyway, and that would have been taxed had you earned it.