The Personal Injury Process in Tulsa: What Happens After You Win
How are the proceeds for a Tulsa accident case distributed?
If your Tulsa personal injury case settles, or there is a jury verdict in your favor, the next obvious question is, “How do I get paid?” After all, that’s the ultimate objective – to get money for your medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, and other damages. We work with your doctors, employers, and most importantly you, to maximize your net recovery.
At Biby Law, our personal injury lawyers have a strong record of success. Unless a defendant doesn’t have insurance and is wealthy enough to pay your claim, most personal injury claims are paid by the insurance companies for the defendants. In many cases, the defendants pay the full amount of the policy limits or a substantial part of the policy limits. We’ll obtain the funds from the insurance companies and review and arrange for the final distribution of these funds.
How is the settlement or trial award distributed in Oklahoma personal injury cases?
If your case settles with the insurance company, you will almost certainly be required to execute a release. The release, which is oftentimes prepared by the insurer or their attorney, states that you are settling your claim against the insured for a specific dollar amount. In return, you agree not to pursue any further action against the defendant for compensation. In short, once you settle and you receive the proceeds, you waive your right to further compensation or claims. It is critical to ensure any potential settlement agreement is reviewed by a competent, experienced personal injury attorney.
If there is a jury verdict, then we notify the insurance company that there is a verdict in favor of our client against their insured client. The insurance company is then required to pay the insurance proceeds to our firm on behalf of our client in the amount of the verdict – unless the defendant appeals the decision. In the same way, if the appeals are ultimately denied, the insurance company is required to pay the insurance proceeds to our firm on behalf of our client.
What is a schedule of distribution or settlement statement?
Once we receive the insurance proceeds, we prepare a written schedule of distribution or settlement statement. This document is an accounting of the funds that are received, and how those funds will be distributed to account for medical bills, fees, costs and any other expenses that arise relative to the case.
What funds are reimbursed to the law firm?
There are some priority funds that are paid before the client or the law firm receives any money. These priority funds are funds that were advanced or deferred, where there is a right of subrogation, or where there is a lien. These funds are generally paid first before either the client or lawyer is paid.
Often, our firm will advance funds in the form of case expenses so that your case can proceed in court and proceed to trial. Whether these funds are paid before you receive your share or after you receive you share depends on the terms of the contingency fee agreement. Usually, we advance the funds and then are reimbursed before the remaining funds are distributed to you. These funds typically include:
- Court filing costs
- Deposition costs
- Expert witness fees
- Invoices to obtain medical bills and records
- Any other costs to support the claim
How much is my share?
The settlement statement will show line-by-line all funds collected as part of any settlement or judgment. It will also show where every single piece of the funds will be distributed including expense reimbursements, attorney fees, medical bill payments and net recovery to the client. The distribution will follow the contingency fee agreement you signed with our office and, in the event of a settlement, should closely reflect the figures discussed with your attorney when contemplating whether or not to settle your case. In the event of a judgment received at trial, the amount awarded by the jury is what you are entitled to receive. Good, bad or indifferent, the verdict rendered by a jury is oftentimes the last shoe to drop whether the injured party thinks it is fair or not.
For the medical services that were already provided, the health care providers generally are either:
- Paid through your own private health insurance, by a public insurance company such as Medicare or Medicaid, or by your personal injury protection (PIP)/MedPay carrier.
- Deferred by agreement by the healthcare provider that the provider will be paid when the insurance proceeds are received.
If paid by a health insurer, the issue of subrogation must be addressed. In short, if a health insurer pays for medical treatment related to an injury incident and you receive compensation for that incident, they are entitled to be repaid for what they have paid towards your medical bills. Medical liens, on the other hand, usually apply when a healthcare provider has provided treatment but has not been paid. In some cases, subrogation or liens may apply for other expenses – such as vehicle repair costs and assistance payments.
What is a structured settlement agreement?
In some Tulsa personal injury cases, the amount that the injury victim receives can benefit from being put into a structured settlement. A structured settlement defers the payments by paying them out over a period of time – usually years. Doing so usually results in tax advantages and can be invested to build the size of the overall sum of money when immediate access to the funds is not needed or desired. Structured settlements are an option to consider if the victim is a minor or is mentally incompetent to help ensure the funds are preserved and available when needed. Our attorneys are available to explain when and how to implement a structured settlement if it is right for your case.
Do you have a personal injury lawyer near me?
We have two convenient Tulsa offices located at 1646 S Denver Ave. and 6305 E 120th Ct. Suite K9. We are also available meet clients at their homes, a healthcare facility or via video conferences by appointment.
Speak with a seasoned Tulsa personal injury trial lawyer today
At Biby Law Firm, our Tulsa personal injury lawyers review our contingency fee agreements with you at the initial consultation. If there is a settlement or a jury verdict in your favor, we collect the insurance proceeds and will review with you the precise distribution of every dollar collected. Over the years we’ve earned the respect of clients for our strong advocacy, candidness and trust.
For help with your personal injury claim or the wrongful death of a loved one, call our trial lawyers or use our contact form to schedule an appointment. We proudly serve all of Oklahoma including the communities of Broken Arrow, Bixby, Claremore, Jenks, Sand Springs, Sapulpa, Owasso, Wagoner, Muskogee, and the surrounding areas.