Q: Is my consent required before my lawyer can settle my case?
A: Yes. However, if you entered into a retainer agreement authorizing your attorney to execute a settlement and release on your behalf, you effectively consented to settle the case by proxy.
Q: Can I get a copy of the settlement check?
A: Absolutely. Your rights also extend to receiving a copy of the settlement breakdown prior to the check deposit, and copies of any checks your attorney writes to cover your lawsuit expenditures. The net settlement check you receive, added to the expense checks, should total the gross settlement amount.
Q: My child received settlement money, how can I access those funds?
A: Usually, a parent cannot access their child’s settlement funds. Your child’s money is held in a bank account until he (or she) reaches the age of 18. If the child’s well-being and care are in question, the courts sometimes allow the disbursement of funds to benefit the child.
Q: How is my lawsuit settlement award collected?
A: If the defendant in your personal injury lawsuit had insurance, your attorney notifies the insurance company that a judgment has been entered. The insurer then issues a check covering damages up to the policy limit. If the defendant is uninsured, once judgment is entered with the court, your attorney may have to file a motion to enforce the judgment. Your attorney can advise you on collections measures to take, if necessary.
Q: When can I expect my personal injury award disbursement?
A: Pursuant to §1.15 in the Rules of Professional Conduct for attorneys, gross settlement award funds must be deposited into a “client trust account,” “Interest on Lawyers Trust Accounts (IOLTA),” or a “clearly identifiable fiduciary title.” Once the settlement check has cleared, your attorney then writes checks to pay your lawsuit expenses and issues a check in the amount of the net award to you.
If you have any other questions about your personal injury claim, please contact our Ohio personal injury lawyers for a free initial consultation at (216) 289-4740, toll free at (855) 468-4878 (Got-Hurt) or contact us by filling out our No-Risk Consultation form.