How Long Does a Motorcycle Accident Lawsuit Take

The short answer: It depends. While the accident itself can happen in a fraction of a second, too many variables are involved in the legal process to know exactly how long a settlement or litigation may take. An experienced motorcycle accident lawyer will guide you through the process, but the timeline is still uncertain, depending on these variables.

A settlement can be as fast as a few weeks or a lawsuit can be over in as few as six months. But in some cases, it can stretch more than a year. Familiarizing yourself with that legal process is much more beneficial than trying to narrow down an exact timeline without knowing all the details.

More specifically, the variables involved in determining how long a motorcycle accident lawsuit takes typically include:

  • The severity of the accident
  • Gathering of evidence
  • Insurance claims processing
  • Settlement negotiations
  • Litigation to ensure fair compensation

Let’s explore each of these variables in more detail.

Schedule A Free Consultation

How the Severity of the Accident Impacts the Accident Lawsuit Timeline

How Long Does a Motorcycle Accident Lawsuit Take

If you’re hurt in a motorcycle accident, your injuries are likely worse than those of other vehicles on the road. Although only 0.3 percent of all registered vehicles in the United States are motorcycles, they account for 4 percent of all traffic injuries and 14 percent of all traffic deaths. You’re more vulnerable due to lack of protections, which tends to cause more severe accidents.

That severity, in turn, can extend the lawsuit you’ll be involved in. Legal proceedings typically don’t begin until any accident survivors have made at least a partial physical recovery, to more easily predict the costs of that recovery. Similarly, more property damage will need more time and budget for repairs, another monetary variable that plays into the lawsuit.

Finally, more severe injuries tend to take more money for recovery, and more difficult-to-estimate variables like pain and suffering become more likely to enter the equation.

All of these factors tend to extend the timeline for motorcycle accidents when compared to other vehicles. The longer recovery time frame, coupled with higher losses, all lead to more time that legal representation on both sides needs to gather evidence and build their case.

How Evidence Gathering Can Lengthen a Motorcycle Lawsuit

Motorcycle accident lawsuits typically begin with an accident claim against the party you or your lawyer deem to be at fault for the accident. However, you’ll need at least some evidence to support that claim, and gathering that evidence takes time.

When working with anyone involved in a motorcycle accident, attorneys tend to look for a few things before making any comprehensive insurance or legal claims:

  • A certified copy of the accident report from the police
  • If available, pictures from the scene of the accident that records any injuries or property damage for anyone involved
  • Witness statements from those who were present but not directly involved in the accident
  • Any medical and repair bills needed to repair the immediate personal or property damage caused by the accident

And that’s just the beginning. An attorney may also look for footage from traffic surveillance cameras or interview first responders at the scene.

Contacting an experienced lawyer as soon as possible after your motorcycle accident is crucial. That can speed up this step, as evidence becomes more difficult to obtain as more time passes from the date of the accident. But even contacting an attorney right away still means having to account for at least some time in gathering the evidence needed to prove your innocence and right to compensation.

How Insurers Can Delay the Timeline Through Claims Processing

Working with an experienced lawyer means that your legal representation can submit an insurance claim on your behalf as soon as you have enough evidence. The insurance company is legally required to respond, but that doesn’t mean they have to respond quickly or satisfactorily.

Keep in mind that insurance companies exist as for-profit organizations, meaning their business goal is to make money. They’ll look at your claim for reasons to not pay the requested amount, threatening to fight it in court.

Working with a lawyer provides more credibility for your claim, but that isn’t an automatic win.

You may still fall victim to common insurance company tactics, like:

  • Blaming you for the accident or at least assigning partial fault to you for the accident.
  • Questioning whether the injuries you’ve sustained were indeed due to the accident or pre-existing conditions.
  • Taking as long as possible to respond to your insurance claim in the hopes of wearing you down.
  • Encouraging you to settle quickly, sometimes even with threats that their offer will decrease if you don’t accept it on the spot.

Sure, in some cases, the insurance company will pay exactly what you ask for, and it never comes to a lawsuit. But more frequently, you will find yourself in an insurance battle that can take additional time before you receive any compensation.

Let your lawyer do the talking and negotiations for you in this part of the process. That ensures your need for speedy recovery doesn’t trump your expectation and rightful claim to a full settlement. Never provide recorded statements or sign documents without first discussing them with your lawyer.

How Settlement Negotiations Can Affect the Length of the Lawsuit

Don’t be discouraged if the insurance company’s first offer is unsatisfactory or enough to cover your expenses. It’s likely just the beginning of negotiations between the insurance company and your lawyer, which can take a while.

Consult with your personal injury lawyer if you receive a lowball settlement or even an outright denied claim. The lawyer will likely send further evidence and communications that prove your case or work to gather that evidence.

The more complex the case, the longer the negotiations will drag on. Especially in states with comparative negligence laws, where multiple parties may be partially at fault, that process can continue to extend. Additional evidence, like witness statements, may be necessary to prove your position and that you deserve the settlement.

More specifically, these factors typically affect the length of any motorcycle accident settlement negotiations:

  • How far apart your initial compensation request and the insurance company’s initial counteroffer were.
  • How much unique evidence your lawyer needs to gather on your behalf to back up your claim and compensation.
  • The speed with which the insurance company responds to the initial claim and any future communications.
  • How many rounds of negotiation you’ll need to reach an agreement that is truly fair to all parties involved.

This process can get frustrating, especially if you need the funds to pay for medical expenses and other variables. But keep in mind that it’s in the insurance company’s best interest to settle before going to court, where their risk of paying even more than your initial request increases significantly.

How Litigation Can Extend the Motorcycle Accident Lawsuit

If, even after multiple rounds, you cannot agree to a fair settlement, it’s time to take the insurance company to court. Litigation, of course, will further extend the timeline of a motorcycle accident lawsuit, but it’s also your final and best chance to get what you deserve after the accident.

The legal process begins with filing a complaint in civil court in your state. Any lawyer filing the complaint on your behalf will need to be sure they have all the evidence they need to back up the claim and potentially win a court case. That’s because the complaint will need to be strong enough to survive the likely immediate counter by the insurance company, which is to dismiss the trial.

Once you file a complaint, the insurance company has 30 days to file an answer that builds its case against your evidence. The same timeline also applies to any request for dismissal, either because of a structural error (like filing the complaint in the wrong court) or lack of evidence.

You have a chance to file a response, and the court will consider both sides—a process that typically takes multiple months.

The litigation process will continue assuming the court does not dismiss the suit. At this point, there may be another opportunity for a settlement as the defendant tries to avoid ongoing legal costs. Consult with your attorney over whether any settlement offer is fair or the extended timeline of an ongoing lawsuit is justified.

Throughout the process, your lawyer will help you gather evidence and make your case. Gathering that additional evidence takes time, and the defendant and their insurance company may continue to try to delay the process through procedural motions. Patience is crucial at this stage as the case moves closer to a trial.

Eventually, and should the settlement still not be adequate, the lawsuit will move the trail. Now, your lawyer will look to make your case before a judge or jury. Insurance companies try to prevent this final step because of the potential bad publicity, leading to another round of settlement negotiations. These negotiations, and the trial itself, can take more time before the lawsuit is finally over.

Remember that even if you win the initial case, the defendant may choose to appeal the outcome if they lose, which can add further time to the overall process.

Walking the Line Between a Speedy Lawsuit and Fair Compensation

Yes, a motorcycle accident lawsuit will take time. In many cases, it will probably take longer than you would prefer. However, much of that slow timeline can actually play to your advantage in your quest to receive fair compensation for injuries or any other type of harm.

Gathering more evidence may take longer, but it will build a more solid case. Negotiations with the insurance increase the timeline and your chance for a fair settlement. Going to court can be a slow process, but if your case is strong, it’s your best chance at fair compensation.

The key, then, is not getting the issue done and over with as quickly as possible. Instead, it’s about going through the process the right way, taking all necessary steps to get the justice you need and deserve.

Speed can be essential, but only if each step is followed as thoroughly as possible. That means working with an experienced lawyer who knows exactly what to do at each stage and can help you through the process expeditiously but without compromising on the quality of your case and effort.

How to Speed up Your Motorcycle Accident Lawsuit

Adam J Zayed, Founder & Trial Attorney
Adam J. Zayed, Motorcycle Accident Injury Lawyer

Finally, let’s go over a few steps you can take early and throughout the process to help your motorcycle accident lawsuit take less time without reducing your chances for a fair settlement or compensation:

  • Contact a lawyer as early as possible. Involving a legal expert soon after the accident means you’ll get advice and guidance on the best steps to take from the beginning, reducing unnecessary actions and simplifying communications with the insurer.
  • Keep all of your medical records and bills. The less digging your lawyer needs to do to find these records, the faster the evidence-gathering stage will take.
  • Talk openly and honestly with your lawyer throughout the process. At best, your lawyer becomes your partner, aware of as much as you are in connection to the case. Withholding information knowingly or unknowingly can complicate things for everyone involved.

Of course, you still need the right legal experts by your side. If you have been injured or sustained property damage in a motorcycle accident, and are wondering about the nuances of the lawsuit, including its length, contact a reliable and experienced personal injury lawyer today to start the process.

How long does a motorcycle accident lawsuit take? If another driver causes a motorcycle accident that leaves you injured or your motorcycle damaged, you’ll likely be entitled to legal compensation. But the legal process can be unpredictable, which is why victims often wonder how long a motorcycle accident lawsuit takes.

The short answer: It depends. While the accident itself can happen in a fraction of a second, too many variables are involved in the legal process to know exactly how long a settlement or litigation may take. An experienced motorcycle accident lawyer will guide you through the process, but the timeline is still uncertain, depending on these variables.

A settlement can be as fast as a few weeks or a lawsuit can be over in as few as six months. But in some cases, it can stretch more than a year. Familiarizing yourself with that legal process is much more beneficial than trying to narrow down an exact timeline without knowing all the details.

More specifically, the variables involved in determining how long a motorcycle accident lawsuit takes typically include:

  • The severity of the accident
  • Gathering of evidence
  • Insurance claims processing
  • Settlement negotiations
  • Litigation to ensure fair compensation

Let’s explore each of these variables in more detail.

Schedule A Free Consultation

How the Severity of the Accident Impacts the Accident Lawsuit Timeline

If you’re hurt in a motorcycle accident, your injuries are likely worse than those of other vehicles on the road. Although only 0.3 percent of all registered vehicles in the United States are motorcycles, they account for 4 percent of all traffic injuries and 14 percent of all traffic deaths. You’re more vulnerable due to lack of protections, which tends to cause more severe accidents.

That severity, in turn, can extend the lawsuit you’ll be involved in. Legal proceedings typically don’t begin until any accident survivors have made at least a partial physical recovery, to more easily predict the costs of that recovery. Similarly, more property damage will need more time and budget for repairs, another monetary variable that plays into the lawsuit.

Finally, more severe injuries tend to take more money for recovery, and more difficult-to-estimate variables like pain and suffering become more likely to enter the equation.

All of these factors tend to extend the timeline for motorcycle accidents when compared to other vehicles. The longer recovery time frame, coupled with higher losses, all lead to more time that legal representation on both sides needs to gather evidence and build their case.

How Evidence Gathering Can Lengthen a Motorcycle Lawsuit

Motorcycle accident lawsuits typically begin with an accident claim against the party you or your lawyer deem to be at fault for the accident. However, you’ll need at least some evidence to support that claim, and gathering that evidence takes time.

When working with anyone involved in a motorcycle accident, attorneys tend to look for a few things before making any comprehensive insurance or legal claims:

  • A certified copy of the accident report from the police
  • If available, pictures from the scene of the accident that records any injuries or property damage for anyone involved
  • Witness statements from those who were present but not directly involved in the accident
  • Any medical and repair bills needed to repair the immediate personal or property damage caused by the accident

And that’s just the beginning. An attorney may also look for footage from traffic surveillance cameras or interview first responders at the scene.

Contacting an experienced lawyer as soon as possible after your motorcycle accident is crucial. That can speed up this step, as evidence becomes more difficult to obtain as more time passes from the date of the accident. But even contacting an attorney right away still means having to account for at least some time in gathering the evidence needed to prove your innocence and right to compensation.

How Insurers Can Delay the Timeline Through Claims Processing

Working with an experienced lawyer means that your legal representation can submit an insurance claim on your behalf as soon as you have enough evidence. The insurance company is legally required to respond, but that doesn’t mean they have to respond quickly or satisfactorily.

Keep in mind that insurance companies exist as for-profit organizations, meaning their business goal is to make money. They’ll look at your claim for reasons to not pay the requested amount, threatening to fight it in court.

Working with a lawyer provides more credibility for your claim, but that isn’t an automatic win.

You may still fall victim to common insurance company tactics, like:

  • Blaming you for the accident or at least assigning partial fault to you for the accident.
  • Questioning whether the injuries you’ve sustained were indeed due to the accident or pre-existing conditions.
  • Taking as long as possible to respond to your insurance claim in the hopes of wearing you down.
  • Encouraging you to settle quickly, sometimes even with threats that their offer will decrease if you don’t accept it on the spot.

Sure, in some cases, the insurance company will pay exactly what you ask for, and it never comes to a lawsuit. But more frequently, you will find yourself in an insurance battle that can take additional time before you receive any compensation.

Let your lawyer do the talking and negotiations for you in this part of the process. That ensures your need for speedy recovery doesn’t trump your expectation and rightful claim to a full settlement. Never provide recorded statements or sign documents without first discussing them with your lawyer.

How Settlement Negotiations Can Affect the Length of the Lawsuit

Don’t be discouraged if the insurance company’s first offer is unsatisfactory or enough to cover your expenses. It’s likely just the beginning of negotiations between the insurance company and your lawyer, which can take a while.

Consult with your personal injury lawyer if you receive a lowball settlement or even an outright denied claim. The lawyer will likely send further evidence and communications that prove your case or work to gather that evidence.

The more complex the case, the longer the negotiations will drag on. Especially in states with comparative negligence laws, where multiple parties may be partially at fault, that process can continue to extend. Additional evidence, like witness statements, may be necessary to prove your position and that you deserve the settlement.

More specifically, these factors typically affect the length of any motorcycle accident settlement negotiations:

  • How far apart your initial compensation request and the insurance company’s initial counteroffer were.
  • How much unique evidence your lawyer needs to gather on your behalf to back up your claim and compensation.
  • The speed with which the insurance company responds to the initial claim and any future communications.
  • How many rounds of negotiation you’ll need to reach an agreement that is truly fair to all parties involved.

This process can get frustrating, especially if you need the funds to pay for medical expenses and other variables. But keep in mind that it’s in the insurance company’s best interest to settle before going to court, where their risk of paying even more than your initial request increases significantly.

How Litigation Can Extend the Motorcycle Accident Lawsuit

If, even after multiple rounds, you cannot agree to a fair settlement, it’s time to take the insurance company to court. Litigation, of course, will further extend the timeline of a motorcycle accident lawsuit, but it’s also your final and best chance to get what you deserve after the accident.

The legal process begins with filing a complaint in civil court in your state. Any lawyer filing the complaint on your behalf will need to be sure they have all the evidence they need to back up the claim and potentially win a court case. That’s because the complaint will need to be strong enough to survive the likely immediate counter by the insurance company, which is to dismiss the trial.

Once you file a complaint, the insurance company has 30 days to file an answer that builds its case against your evidence. The same timeline also applies to any request for dismissal, either because of a structural error (like filing the complaint in the wrong court) or lack of evidence.

You have a chance to file a response, and the court will consider both sides—a process that typically takes multiple months.

The litigation process will continue assuming the court does not dismiss the suit. At this point, there may be another opportunity for a settlement as the defendant tries to avoid ongoing legal costs. Consult with your attorney over whether any settlement offer is fair or the extended timeline of an ongoing lawsuit is justified.

Throughout the process, your lawyer will help you gather evidence and make your case. Gathering that additional evidence takes time, and the defendant and their insurance company may continue to try to delay the process through procedural motions. Patience is crucial at this stage as the case moves closer to a trial.

Eventually, and should the settlement still not be adequate, the lawsuit will move the trail. Now, your lawyer will look to make your case before a judge or jury. Insurance companies try to prevent this final step because of the potential bad publicity, leading to another round of settlement negotiations. These negotiations, and the trial itself, can take more time before the lawsuit is finally over.

Remember that even if you win the initial case, the defendant may choose to appeal the outcome if they lose, which can add further time to the overall process.

Walking the Line Between a Speedy Lawsuit and Fair Compensation

Yes, a motorcycle accident lawsuit will take time. In many cases, it will probably take longer than you would prefer. However, much of that slow timeline can actually play to your advantage in your quest to receive fair compensation for injuries or any other type of harm.

Gathering more evidence may take longer, but it will build a more solid case. Negotiations with the insurance increase the timeline and your chance for a fair settlement. Going to court can be a slow process, but if your case is strong, it’s your best chance at fair compensation.

The key, then, is not getting the issue done and over with as quickly as possible. Instead, it’s about going through the process the right way, taking all necessary steps to get the justice you need and deserve.

Speed can be essential, but only if each step is followed as thoroughly as possible. That means working with an experienced lawyer who knows exactly what to do at each stage and can help you through the process expeditiously but without compromising on the quality of your case and effort.

How to Speed up Your Motorcycle Accident Lawsuit

Finally, let’s go over a few steps you can take early and throughout the process to help your motorcycle accident lawsuit take less time without reducing your chances for a fair settlement or compensation:

  • Contact a lawyer as early as possible. Involving a legal expert soon after the accident means you’ll get advice and guidance on the best steps to take from the beginning, reducing unnecessary actions and simplifying communications with the insurer.
  • Keep all of your medical records and bills. The less digging your lawyer needs to do to find these records, the faster the evidence-gathering stage will take.
  • Talk openly and honestly with your lawyer throughout the process. At best, your lawyer becomes your partner, aware of as much as you are in connection to the case. Withholding information knowingly or unknowingly can complicate things for everyone involved.

Of course, you still need the right legal experts by your side. If you have been injured or sustained property damage in a motorcycle accident, and are wondering about the nuances of the lawsuit, including its length, contact a reliable and experienced personal injury lawyer today to start the process.

Contact the Chicago Motorcycle Accident Law Firm of Zayed Law Offices Personal Injury Attorneys for Help Today

For more information, please contact the experienced Chicago motorcycle accident lawyers at Zayed Law Offices Personal Injury Attorneys today. We offer free consultations.

We proudly serve Cook County, Will County, Kendall County, and its surrounding areas:

Zayed Law Offices Personal Injury Attorneys – Chicago Office
10 S La Salle St STE 1230, Chicago, IL 60603
(312) 726-1616

Zayed Law Offices Personal Injury Attorneys – Joliet Office
195 Springfield Ave, Joliet, IL 60435
(815) 726-1616