Oklahoma Personal Injury Case Timeline

The first question a personal injury client usually asks us concerns damages. Something along the lines of: “what does my recovery and compensation consist of?” (or more to the point: “How much am I going to get?”) After that, the question is usually, “well, what’s next?”

Here is an outline of the steps typically taken in a personal injury case:

  1. After treatment is complete, make settlement demand on insurance company
  2. Filing of lawsuit (Petition) if unable to settle
  3. Service of summons on defendant (private process server or by certified mail)
  4. Defendant has twenty (20) days to file an Answer or Entry of Appearance (may reserve another twenty days to file the Answer)
  5. Discovery (fact finding process):
    a. Interrogatories (thirty days to answer)
    b. Request for Admissions
    c. Request for Production of Documents
    d. Depositions (usually after interrogatories and request for production of documents). Sworn statement before a court reporter
    e. Medical examination of Plaintiff by Defendant’s doctor
  6. Motion to Enter (tell judge to set scheduling deadlines)
  7. Mediation (court ordered settlement meeting)
  8. Pretrial conference (meet with judge after ready for trial)
  9. Trial
  10. Appeal

Settlement discussion may occur at any stage. Over 90% of cases settle before a trial is conducted. Also, the trial process, excluding appeal, averages approximately nine (9) months in Oklahoma County from the date of filing the lawsuit to the date of trial.

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