In many cases, families of abused nursing home residents prefer to settle a nursing home lawsuit out of court. If your family’s claim settles, you won’t need to go to trial—and you won’t have to deal with the emotional stress and inherent uncertainty of asking a judge or jury to render a favorable decision.
Negotiating an out-of-court settlement is also quicker than taking a nursing home neglect or abuse claim to trial. With that said, the amount of time it takes to negotiate a favorable settlement—and whether you should settle at all—depends on the specific facts and circumstances involved.
So, what are the factors that determine how long it takes to settle a nursing home lawsuit? While every family’s case is different, the primary factors involved typically are:
The more evidence your family has to prove nursing home neglect or abuse, the stronger its claim will be. Generally speaking, stronger claims are more likely to settle—and more likely to settle quickly. With that said, even when a nursing home resident has clearly experienced neglect or abuse, it can still take several months to go through the process of dealing with the nursing home’s insurance company and negotiating a favorable settlement.
The insurance company’s willingness to negotiate in good faith is also a key factor that will play a role in determining the length of the settlement process. Simply put, some insurance companies have more reasonable settlement policies than others. If the nursing home’s insurance company is willing to acknowledge liability and negotiate based on the evidence your family’s lawyer presents, this will facilitate a more efficient settlement process. Conversely, if the insurance company is unwilling to negotiate in good faith, this will lead to unnecessary (but unavoidable) delays.
The value of your family’s claim can also impact the settlement timeline. The more your family is entitled to recover, the more the insurance company is going to fight (in most cases). With that said, it is imperative that your family seeks the full financial compensation available. This is true even if this means that it takes longer to receive the financial compensation you deserve.
Nursing home neglect and abuse claims are subject to a time limit known as the statute of limitations. If the statute of limitations for your family’s claim is close to expiring, the nursing home’s insurance company may try to wait out the clock—hoping that your family won’t go to court in time. This is one of several reasons why it is best to speak with a lawyer about your family’s legal rights as soon as possible.
If your family’s law firm has a record of success in court, this can also help to facilitate efficient settlement negotiations—once again depending on the insurance company. In many cases, if an insurance company knows that it will need to go to court if it refuses to offer a fair settlement, this will help to spur good-faith settlement negotiations.
Ultimately, when you have a nursing home lawsuit, it is up to you to decide when (and if) to settle. How do you make this decision? The key is to have a clear understanding of:
When you engage a law firm to represent your family, your family’s lawyer will help you make informed decisions throughout the process. If a settlement offer is on the table, your family’s lawyer will tell you exactly how much your family will take home if you accept—and then you can use this information to decide what is best in light of the facts and circumstances at hand.
Do you have questions about filing a nursing home lawsuit in Wisconsin? If so, we invite you to get in touch.
To learn more in a FREE, no-obligation case evaluation, call 608-268-0268 or contact us online today. We welcome clients from Madison and across Wisconsin.
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We live in Friendship, Wisconsin, and Boller & Vaughan came to our doorstep to discuss our mother’s wrongful death claim on a Saturday morning. Not only were we pleased with the large recovery, we were so thankful to have lawyers who were willing to explain to us every twist and turn along the way. It is great to know there is a law firm that will fight for the rights of elderly people all over Wisconsin.
Mr. Boller and Ms. Vaughan were incredible in working on my case and my daughter’s case. I was out of work and in the hospital with a new baby. Mr. Boller and Ms. Vaughan protected our rights and it was a pleasure to work with them. I hope never to be in another motor vehicle accident, however, if I am and I am injured, I will contact Boller & Vaughan immediately.
I was referred to Michelle through a friend. I have never had a better experience. It took a little over a year to get my settlement but the staff there stayed in constant contact and kept me in the loop. Oh, and Michelle actually got me MORE money than we discussed. I will refer anyone to this firm. Words cannot do justice the thanks that I have for Michelle and her staff (Mary especially) thank you guys so much!
After my husband died as a result of a motor vehicle accident, Boller & Vaughan spent countless hours talking with me, meeting with me in person, and making sure that I was okay. The drunk driver who hit us did not have any insurance, and we had to make a claim through our own insurance. Boller & Vaughan was fantastic at explaining the law to me and the handling of our claims.
After my son was injured in a daycare setting, Ms. Vaughan took the time to thoroughly investigate our case and my son’s injuries. Michele was approachable and had answers to our questions. Talking with her helped to relieve many of our anxieties.