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Timeline Of A Personal Injury Lawsuit

Jed Dietrich, Esq. and the Buffalo, New York Personal Injury Lawyers at the Dietrich Law Firm P.C. Will be by Your Side Throughout the Entire Personal Injury Lawsuit Process.


If you were involved in an accident such as a slip and fall, car accident or bicycle accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you may ask yourself: “Do I have a personal injury case?”, “Do I need a lawyer for my personal injury case?” and “How long will my personal injury case take?”.

These are very common questions to have, especially when faced with severe injuries, medical bills and the loss of income from being unable to work. Filing a personal injury lawsuit may be an option to attempt to recover for your injuries caused by someone else’s negligence. The information that follows is meant to give you a general overview of the process of a personal injury lawsuit and what you can expect in the time after an accident.

If you were injured in New York State and believe that you may have a claim for personal injuries, call Jed Dietrich, Esq. today at 716-839-3939. Jed Dietrich, Esq. and his aggressive and tenacious team of Buffalo, New York personal injury attorneys have the experience necessary to determine if you have a claim and to develop a plan to help you recover the compensation that you deserve for your injuries and losses. Insurance companies have paid Jed Dietrich, Esq. over $175,000,000.00 to compensate his clients for their serious personal injuries. Contact us today at 716-839-3939 for your free consultation. We are available 24 hours per day and 7 days per week, and there is never a fee unless we WIN for you!

Personal Injury Timeline
The Accident

While nobody ever expects to be the victim of an accident, accidents happen every day. If you are involved in an accident, even if you do not feel injured, it is crucial to seek medical treatment as soon as possible. Accident victims are known to experience an adrenaline rush or shock, which naturally numbs their pain and can temporarily hide even severe injuries. Additionally, seeking immediate medical treatment will help document your injuries, the cause of your injuries and a timeframe of the onset and progression of your injuries.

In addition, it is important to collect as much information about the accident as possible. This can be done by calling the police and creating a Police Report. In addition, take photographs or videos of the scene of the accident and your injuries. Finally, gather the contact information of any people who were involved or witnesses to the accident.

Be Mindful Of Time Deadlines

Be aware that there are strict time constraints applicable to filing personal injury claims after an accident. Additionally, you may have to submit forms to your insurance company, the other party’s insurance company, the Department of Motor Vehicles or a municipal entity in order to ensure that your rights are preserved.

Deadlines that commonly apply to personal injury accident claims include:

  1. 10 Days: An MV-104 form must be filed with the Department of Motor Vehicles by all drivers who are involved in a reportable motor vehicle accident that took place in New York State. This includes accidents causing a fatality, personal injury and/or property damage over $1,000 to any one person.
  2. 30 Days: An Application for Motor Vehicle No-Fault Benefits, or NF-2, must be submitted to the appropriate No-Fault insurance company to be eligible for No-Fault benefits. If you do not submit a timely No-Fault Application, you may lose your right to receive No-Fault benefits.
  3. 90 Days: A claim against a municipal entity such as a city, town or village requires a Notice of Claim be filed, putting the municipality on notice of an accident. Failure to file a timely Notice of Claim may forfeit your right to pursue a claim for your injuries against the municipality.
  4. Statute of Limitations: Failure to file a lawsuit within the applicable statute of limitations will bar an individual’s right to recover compensation for their injuries and losses. The statute of limitations depends on the type of case a plaintiff files. It is best to consult with Jed Dietrich, Esq., an experienced Buffalo, New York personal injury lawyer, to ensure that your rights will be preserved. Common statutes of limitations for accidents occurring in New York State include:
    1. Claims Against Municipalities, New York State and New York City: 1 year and 90 days; 90 days to give notice
    2. Wrongful Death: 2 years from death
    3. Medical Malpractice: 2 years and 6 months from date of malpractice
    4. Car Accident: 3 years from date of accident
    5. Emotional Distress (Negligent): 3 years from date of accident
    6. Negligence Resulting in Personal Injury: 3 years from date of accident
    7. Product Liability: 3 years from date of accident
    8. Slip and Fall Accident: 3 years from date of accident

Contact the Dietrich Law Firm P.C.’s experienced personal injury attorneys in Buffalo, New York today at 716-839-3939 for your free consultation. Our team assists clients in submitting MV-104 forms, No-Fault Applications, and Notice of Claim papers where applicable—at no extra cost! We also identify the statute of limitations for each client’s specific case so that we can ensure their rights to compensation are protected.

Contact An Experienced Buffalo, New York Personal Injury Attorney

Soon after your accident, you should contact Jed Dietrich, Esq., an experienced personal injury attorney, to discuss the details of your claim. According to research conducted by the Insurance Research Council, those who retain a lawyer for their personal injury case typically receive 3.5 times higher settlements than those who settle on their own. Often times this number is much greater.

Click here for more information about how to find the best personal injury lawyer in Buffalo, New York. An attorney’s accolades, experience and results are important to consider when deciding which attorney is best for you.

Your initial consultation is confidential and free. An interviewing attorney will gather information about your background, the accident, your injuries and treatment, and any prior any injuries you have had. The attorney will try to establish who was at fault for your accident and the scope of the harm suffered in order to determine the best course of action. It is important to be as open honest as possible with the attorney. Click here for a list of materials that you should bring with you to your initial consultation.

If you were injured in an accident, contact the Dietrich Law Firm P.C. today at 716-839-3939. Our team of top rated negligence accident injury attorneys in Buffalo, New York will fight for the compensation that you deserve for the injuries that you suffered.

Investigating The Claim, Settlement Negotiations And Filing A Lawsuit

Each accident case has its own unique set of circumstances. For this reason, it is important to hire a knowledgeable lawyer who knows what evidence to look for. Upon hiring a personal injury attorney, they will initiate an investigation and gather your medical records related to the accident. Additionally, they will collect and preserve evidence that identifies the cause of the accident and proves the other party’s liability. This evidence may include:

  1. Pictures of the condition that caused the accident;
  2. Property records;
  3. Pictures from the scene of the accident;
  4. Surveillance video footage;
  5. Reports of the accident;
  6. Testimony from eyewitnesses; and
  7. Expert witness testimony.

After reviewing your medical records and the circumstances surrounding your case, your attorney may engage in settlement negotiations with the insurance company. Often times, though not always, personal injury claims are settled prior to a lawsuit being filed.

Image description Shortly after an accident, but before filing a lawsuit, a claim should be filed and opened with the other party’s insurance company. The insurance company will assign a claim adjuster to evaluate the claim and potentially try and negotiate a settlement. If no insurance company is involved, a demand letter, outlining damages and expected compensation, can be sent to the other party. A majority of personal injury cases are settled without ever going to trial. If a settlement cannot be reached, your lawyer will file a lawsuit and submit a formal complaint to the court. The opposing party will be served with paperwork and have a limited time to file their response. Insurance companies may feel more pressure for settlement after a lawsuit has been filed.

When you retain the Dietrich Law Firm P.C., our team will thoroughly investigate your claim and ensure that any available evidence is properly preserved to help you obtain the maximum compensation for your injuries. Call our team at 716-839-3939 today.

Discovery, Mediation And Arbitration

After a lawsuit begins, each party investigates the other’s legal claims and defenses during discovery. Discovery informs each side exactly what they are up against. Parties submit requests to one another for information and documents. Additionally, depositions of all relevant witnesses, including the plaintiff and defendant, will be taken. At a deposition a lawyer asks questions to the person being deposed and they give responses under oath. In addition, each side will begin to consult with expert witnesses to testify on their behalf, and the defense may request the plaintiff to submit to an independent medical examination.

As the parties collect information and begin to look for a resolution, they may choose to engage in alternative dispute resolution (ADR)—a way of resolving the claim without going to trial. Mediation and arbitration are two common forms of ADR. Mediation is when both the plaintiff and defendant meet with a neutral mediator to assist them in reaching a settlement agreement. Mediation allows the parties to realistically assess their cases and make decisions about whether continuing to trial is the best option. Arbitration, often regarded as a mini-trial, involves a hearing between the plaintiff and defendant before a neutral third-party. Unlike mediation, where the agreement is formed by the parties, arbitration leaves the resolution at the hands of the arbitrator. Arbitration is considered binding and an arbitrator’s decision regarding the case is final.

WERE YOU, OR A LOVED ONE, INJURED AS A RESULT OF AN ACCIDENT IN BUFFALO, NIAGARA FALLS, ROCHESTER, ALBANY OR OTHER PARTS OF NEW YORK?

CALL JED DIETRICH, ESQ. AND HIS TEAM OF BUFFALO, NEW YORK PERSONAL INJURY ACCIDENT ATTORNEYS AT 716-839-3939 TODAY!

Civil Trial

If a settlement cannot be reached, the case proceeds to trial. At trial, relevant evidence will be presented in front of a jury. There are five key phases in a civil trial:

  1. A jury is selected by the judge and lawyers;
  2. Both lawyers give their opening statements;
  3. Witness testimonies and relevant evidence, such as medical records, photographs and video footage, are presented;
  4. The lawyers give their closing arguments; and
  5. Members of the jury deliberate and reach a verdict.

Personal injury trials typically last between 3-10 days, although it could be as short as one day in a straightforward case, or take months for more complex litigation. Trials can be rather unpredictable because the ultimate decision lies with the jury. Nevertheless, if the evidence is in the plaintiff’s favor and they have a skilled trial lawyer, accident victims are capable of getting the compensation they deserve.

For more information regarding personal injury lawsuits, please feel free to contact us today. If you were seriously injured in an accident, contact the team of Buffalo, New York personal injury attorneys at the Dietrich Law Firm P.C. for a free consultation. We are available 24 hours per day and 7 days per week at 716-839-3939 or by filling out the online consultation form.


Call the Dietrich Law Firm P.C. immediately at 716-839-3939 so that our aggressive, tenacious and hardworking personal injury lawyers can fight to obtain the best result for your personal injury claim in Buffalo, New York. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and there is never a fee until we WIN for you!

Client Reviews
★★★★★
I am a medical doctor and have worked with many of the best lawyers in Buffalo and I can say without question that Jed Dietrich is the only lawyer I would trust with my injury case in Buffalo New York. B.O.
★★★★★
Dogged, Determined, and Dead-set on getting you the Maximum settlement for your injuries! T.F.
★★★★★
No one will work harder, smarter or better; I have retained Jed and he obtained the best result for my case. D.P.
★★★★★
The definition of an "A" type personality-exactly who I would want to represent me in a serious personal injury case. E.S.
★★★★★
Jed is a Master in the courtroom without an equal. S.C.
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