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How Are Personal Injury Settlements Paid Out in Minnesota?

After you’ve filed a personal injury lawsuit, there are two primary ways for it to be resolved: either you’ll agree to a settlement, or the case will go to trial. However, most personal injury lawsuits end in a settlement, since that’s typically the fastest (and cheapest) option.

A settlement means that the party you’re filing against (or rather, their insurance company) pays you a certain sum of money as compensation for your injury. In return, you agree not to pursue further legal action against them.

Many injury victims may think that they’ll receive their check immediately after reaching a settlement. However, it can take a few weeks to get what you’re owed. This can be frustrating, but if you know what to expect, the whole process will go a lot smoother.

Here’s how personal injury settlements are paid out.

Step 1: Signing the Release

Once you’ve reached a settlement with an insurance company, their lawyers will draft a series of release forms. These stipulate that you can’t file any further lawsuits against them relating to your injury.

These release forms may be simple or complex, depending on the details of your injury. Regardless, your personal injury attorney will need to review them to ensure that you’re not signing anything that could cause problems for you.

Once everyone involved is satisfied with the release forms, you can sign them.

Step 2: The Insurance Company Sends You a Check

Once the insurance company receives the signed release forms, they’ll process them and write a check for the agreed-upon amount. Usually, they’ll make the check payable to both you and your attorney. They will then send the check to your attorney.

Step 3: Your Attorney Deposits the Check

Upon receipt, your attorney will deposit the check into a trust or escrow account where it will be held for you. Don’t worry, this is only temporary. Once the check clears, the attorney is free to distribute the money.

Step 4: Your Attorney Pays Any Liens

Next, your attorney will use the cleared check to settle any debts or liens connected with your injury. For example, they may need to send a portion of the settlement money to:

  • Healthcare providers with unpaid bills
  • Your health insurance company
  • Medicare
  • Medicaid

These debts must be paid right away. If you ignore liens from medical providers, government agencies, or insurance companies, you could face serious penalties.

Step 5: Your Attorney Deducts Legal Fees and Costs

After paying any liens, your attorney will deduct their own legal fees and costs from your settlement. The fee will represent a certain percentage of your compensation as laid out in your attorney-client contract. Additional expenses may include costs associated with:

  • Gathering medical records or other forms of evidence
  • Hiring investigators
  • Hiring expert witnesses
  • Paying deposition and court reporting fees

You should always request an itemized statement detailing your legal costs. And if you have concerns about any of the expenses your attorney has deducted, make sure to discuss the matter with them.

Step 6: You Receive Your Compensation

Now comes the last step—and the best part of the whole process. You’ll receive your settlement and get the compensation you’re entitled to. You can opt to have the check mailed to you or pick it up yourself at your attorney’s office.

And don’t let the liens and deductions worry you too much—you should still have plenty left over to help you get through the aftermath of your injury.

How Long Will This Process Take?

Typically, it will take somewhere between four to six weeks after signing the release forms to get your settlement check. However, several factors could delay this. The insurance company could stall, there could be unexpected problems with paying off your liens, or your attorney might be swamped with multiple cases and have trouble expediting the process.

If things seem to be taking too long, reach out to your attorney for an update. They should be able to tell you if there are any delays and possibly help to resolve them. 

Get Experienced Help With Your Personal Injury Claim

If you or a loved one has suffered an injury, you may have grounds for a legal claim—and we can help.

At SiebenCarey, we’ve helped thousands of personal injury victims get the compensation they deserve through settlements and trial verdicts. Just contact us, and we’ll put out decades of experience to work helping you get every dollar you’re owed.

We can:

  • Explain your rights to you
  • Investigate your injury
  • Strengthen your case
  • Put you on the path to a brighter future

Click here for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.

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Client Reviews

out of 182 reviews
Deb Colombe

I was involved in a car accident that was complicated at best. God blessed with me Eric Beyer as my attorney. Although it was a long drawn out process between the two insurance companies, Eric was not only my attorney, he was my rock.

Eric is one of the most ethical people I have ever met in my lifetime. He was a constant source of not only information, but of comfort throughout the whole process. I never doubted for one moment that Eric did not have my best interest at heart. He took every word I said seriously and did what he had to do. If I ever have the misfortune of another injury like this, I would go to no one other than Eric Beyer. I will never in my lifetime be able to thank Eric enough or let him know how much I respect him and what a comfort he was and has continued to be for me. God Bless you Eric Beyer.

Daunne Schaller

I was seriously injured in a car accident on my wedding night and went to SiebenCarey. Being involved in an accident is never fun. The folks at SiebenCarey got us thru the event helping us get on with our lives. They were up front and honest. We knew we could trust them. It’s clear to me why Art has been recognized as a Best Lawyer in America and Super Lawyer for 12 years running. Now anytime I know someone who was involved in an accident I refer them to SiebenCarey.

Jeanne Tondryk

Eric W. Beyer helped me through a very difficult time and his professionalism, advice and results from an injury were highly respected. Amidst the personal part of getting myself back to health, his guidance when life was blurry was so appreciated. He listened and then put forth my options honestly and directly which I totally appreciated!

 Was totally satisfied with his hard work and dedication to help me. I'd highly recommend him. Thank you Eric!

Jesse Bukal

In need of a personal injury attorney? Well you're if you're reading this you're in the right place. You'd be hard pressed to find more competent attorneys than the ones here at SiebenCarey.

They took my case to trial and an amazing job presenting the facts and fighting for my best interests! Three years ago I was unsure of what my future would bring; now that it's over I can rest a bit easier. With SiebenCarey as my counsel, I believe I had the absolute BEST representation a person could've asked for. I knew that I wanted the absolute best representation when searching for an attorney to handle my case and I most definitely received it.

If you need a personal injury attorney, look no further. Can't recommend highly enough.

Chris and Amy Boys

We worked with Art and his team on a personal injury case. We could not have been more pleased with the result. Art and his team were both professional and personable, and were a pleasure to work with. I would highly recommend Art and his team if you find yourself in this type of situation.

Laurian Reiners

Mark Olive did an absolutely fantastic job helping Jim during his ordeal with the company he worked for.  The outcome made it so that Jim could retire after the settlement.  We could not asked for a better representative for him.

Joseph Kowalcik

I have been working with Jeff Sieben since the year 2003 and I find he does excellent work.

Vicki Burkhardt

Art and his staff were fantastic. After being involved in a car accident they made the process so easy and effortless. The end result exceeded anything I ever expected. The right lawyer really makes a difference and Art and his staff were definitely the right choice. I would highly recommend giving them a call if you are unfortunate to get in an accident.

Angie

We were VERY pleased with Jeff's attention to us and our case.  Jeff, and all of the team there, did an outstanding job of making that process as stress-free as possible for us.  The communications were never delayed; response time (no matter how often we had questions) was beyond expectations. We truly liked Jeff's up-front and true-life demeanor, nothing was sugar-coated nor was anything spoken or written in terms we didn't understand which meant we were all talking on the same levels and never felt uneducated in the attorney world we were dealing with. I would certainly refer anyone I know to you all!

Teresa Theobald

I cannot express how happy my family is with Mr. Beyer!  He has impressed us in too many ways to count!  As educated people, we attempted to accomplish litigation on our own...BIG mistake!  Mr. Beyer and his staff are amazing!  Litigation is their wheelhouse.  If you are wondering if you should hire them; the answer is yes.

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