If there was ever a light at the end of the tunnel, it's getting a fair compensation judgment for your injuries. The process toward this goal may have been a bit more lengthy than you anticipated, and dealing with accident injuries are always stressful, but once you have been granted a judgment the end is in sight. There's a few more issues and details in this part of the process that it's helpful for you to be aware of, so read on to find out more about what to expect for your injuries.
A Good Case
Once you've spoken to a personal injury lawyer about your case against the careless driver that hit you, your quest has begun. You may not have realized the full import of those first few interactions with your lawyer, but the final outcome was verified before you even signed a contract. This is because most personal injury lawyers take cases without the victims needing to pay any money up front for legal representation. Known as contingency fee agreements, this allows accident victims to get quality legal help, even if the accident has negatively impacted their budget.
The Means to Get You Paid
It only stands to reason that you cannot gain compensation if there is no money available. Suing someone who has no assets or insurance would be a useless activity, and no attorney would take the case. The lawyer you contracted with will be able to ascertain through a bit of investigation the level of insurance the at-fault driver had, as well as any other assets owned by the driver. For example, if the other driver owns real estate or had a bank account, those are assets that you might have access to. If need be, your lawyer can file to have the defendant's (the driver's) assets frozen until the final outcome of the case is known.
Once the court rules in your favor, hopefully, you can expect a fairly timely response from the defendants. If there is auto insurance or other forms of insurance (such as an umbrella policy), the payment to you must be delivered within a certain amount of time, such as 30 days.
Methods of Ensuring Payment
The courts have several vehicles available for those who need to be paid their judgment, and any number of the below may be utilized. If insurance is not adequate or the driver was not insured, you can initiate:
1. Wage garnishment: This is where you have a court order to have a certain portion of the defendant's wages sent to you by their employer before they get the rest of the paycheck.
2. Bank levy: This is taking the money from an account (bank, investment, etc.) that had been previously identified and frozen.
3. Abstract judgment: If the debtor has property that has previously been identified as an asset, an order is issued to place a lien on property. This prevents the debtor from selling or giving away the property until any judgment is satisfied.
To get more information about where the funds will come from to satisfy your hoped for judgment, speak to a personal injury attorney such as Downard & Associates.