What Is the Process of Receiving a Settlement Check in St. Louis, Missouri?

Most personal injury claims in Missouri are settled through settlement negotiations with the at-fault party and/or their insurance company. Even if you filed a personal injury lawsuit, you may settle the case before it goes to trial. Therefore, some of the most common questions clients ask are about the process of receiving a settlement check in St. Louis, Missouri. 

Personal injuries and accidents can result in significant economic damages (financial losses) in addition to physical injuries and emotional distress (non-economic damages). It is common for accident victims to be anxious about the timeline for a personal injury settlement. They may have been out of work for a lengthy period while they recovered, so they need the settlement proceeds as soon as possible. 

However, many steps are involved in the personal injury claims process before you receive a settlement check. Understanding these steps helps you know what to expect while waiting for your settlement check. The steps in a personal injury case include:

  • Injury and medical treatment
  • Contacting an attorney
  • Investigation and gathering evidence
  • Complete medical treatment
  • Settlement demand and negotiations
  • Sign settlement agreement 
  • Issue settlement check
  • Settlement disbursement

When the other party refuses to negotiate a fair settlement, your attorney may advise proceeding with a lawsuit. Filing a personal injury lawsuit involves many steps, including filing pleadings, discovery, and pre-trial motions. The parties may also engage in settlement negotiations and mediation, which could result in a settlement before trial.

A settlement is a voluntary agreement that ends a dispute between parties. A personal injury settlement generally includes waiving all claims by the injured party in exchange for a specific sum paid to them by the other party. The other party agrees to pay the sum but does not admit liability for the claim.

The settlement agreement ends the legal case if the parties are involved in a lawsuit. The plaintiff (injured party) will request that the court dismiss the lawsuit because the parties entered into a settlement agreement. A personal injury case can be settled at any time before a judge or jury renders a verdict.

Be cautious about signing a settlement agreement without an attorney. A settlement agreement is a legally binding contract. 

You give up your right to pursue a claim through the court when you enter a settlement. Once you sign the agreement, you cannot change the terms or change your mind. 

Therefore, you need to ensure that the terms of the agreement are in your best interest. The insurance company and the party who caused your injuries are not looking out for what is best for you. An experienced St. Louis personal injury lawyer protects your rights and works to maximize the money you receive from a personal injury settlement

What Happens After I Sign a Settlement Agreement for a Personal Injury Case in St. Louis, MO?

Once the settlement agreement, waivers, and releases are signed, the insurance provider issues a check for the settlement proceeds. The company may mail the check to the attorney. However, for large amounts, the funds might be transferred electronically. 

Once the settlement check arrives at the attorney’s office, the attorney deposits the check into a trust account. The trust account holds the funds until they clear the bank and can be distributed. 

Before your St. Louis personal injury lawyer can disburse funds to you, the attorney must pay the following:

  • Unpaid medical bills related to your injury
  • Medical liens and subrogation liens
  • Unpaid child support
  • The attorneys’ contingency fees
  • The costs of the case advanced by the law firm

Personal injury lawyers typically use a contingency fee arraignment for personal injury cases. With a contingency fee, the client does not pay a retainer fee when hiring the law firm. Instead, the attorney’s fees are a percentage of the amount recovered for the client.

Therefore, the attorney does not receive their fees unless they win or settle your case. If they do not recover money for your personal injury claim, you do not owe any attorney’s fees. After all required amounts are paid, your lawyer writes a check to you for the net settlement proceeds. 

Sometimes, it could take longer to receive a settlement check. Possible reasons for a delay include:

  • The parties disagree regarding the form of the release and/or settlement agreement
  • The case involves a minor
  • A different office or department of the insurance company is responsible for issuing the check
  • The settlement agreement is not executed correctly
  • Your attorney is negotiating a payoff of a medical lien or subrogation lien

If you are concerned about the timeline for a settlement check, talk to your St. Louis personal injury attorney. There could be a valid reason for the delay. However, you can be assured that your attorney will work diligently to get the money into your hands as soon as possible.

Contact Our Personal Injury Law Firm For Help Today

For more information, please contact Bradley Law Personal Injury Lawyers at your nearest location to schedule a free case evaluation today.

St. Louis Office
1430 Washington Ave Suite #226 St. Louis, MO 63103
(314) 400-0000

Kansas City Office
1509 NE Parvin Rd, Suite A., Kansas City, MO 64116
(816) 408-3448

Or if you would prefer to reach out to us online, please visit our contact us page.