Understanding Personal Injury Lawsuit Funding in Washington

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Personal injury loans

Being caught in the middle of a personal injury lawsuit in Washington often brings financial hardships alongside the quest for justice. Whether it’s the pressing costs of medical bills or everyday living expenses, the financial strain can become unbearable. Personal injury lawsuit funding offers a beacon of hope in these trying times by providing you with the essential financial assistance when you need it most.

How Personal Injury Lawsuit Funding Works in Washington.

Lawsuit funding, also known as pre-settlement funding for personal injury, helps ease the financial burden that comes with being an injured plaintiff. Let’s break down how it works for you:

  1. Application and Evaluation: Your journey starts with applying for a personal injury loan in Washington, ideally after you’ve filed your lawsuit. At Baker Street Funding, we evaluate your case based on its strengths and potential for success. And don’t worry—your credit score or job status won’t affect this process.
  2. No-Risk Funding: Unlike traditional loans, lawsuit funding in Washington is non-recourse. This means you only repay the advance if you win your case or reach a settlement. If your case doesn’t succeed, you won’t owe anything to the lender.
  3. Quick Access to Funds: Once approved, you can access the funds quickly, often within just 24 to 48 hours. This can be a lifesaver for covering immediate expenses like medical bills, living costs, and other important necessities.
  4. Repayment from Settlement: If your lawsuit is successful, repayment of the funding, along with any agreed-upon fees, is made from the settlement amount. Your attorney handles this transaction.

While personal injury loans are not actually regulated in Washington, reputable lawsuit funding companies, like Baker Street Funding, adhere to ethical practices with transparency and fairness throughout the process. Remember, pre-settlement funding in Washington is designed to provide financial relief while your personal injury lawsuit is ongoing. It gives you the space and resources needed to pursue a fair outcome in your legal battle.

Washington’s Personal Injury Law Impact on Lawsuit Funding Decisions.

The personal injury laws in Washington directly affect your eligibility for pre-settlement loans and the amounts you can receive. Typically, funding companies, including Baker Street Funding, approve personal injury loans up to 10% of the estimated value of a Washington lawsuit and up to 20% for settled claims. Here’s what you need to know.

Understanding the Statute of Limitations for Pre-Settlement Funding in Washington

Time is of the essence in personal injury claims. That’s because, generally, you have three years from the incident or injury discovery to file a personal injury lawsuit, as per Washington law Wash. Rev. Code § 4.16.080(2) (2023). For instance, if you suffered an injury in a slip and fall accident on January 1, 2021, you must file your lawsuit by January 1, 2024.

Legal funding companies pay close attention to these timelines. Miss this window, and you might lose out on funding opportunities.

Lawsuits Against Washington State or Local Government

Did you know that suing the Washington State or a local government isn’t like suing just anyone? It’s a bit different. Here’s the quick scoop:

  • Suing Washington State: Before taking legal action against the state of Washington, you must first file your claim with the Washington Department of Enterprise Services. This can be done through their online portal or by using the official claim form. Note that there’s a mandatory waiting period of 60 days after filing your claim before you can proceed with a lawsuit. Importantly, this waiting period pauses the Statute of Limitations.
  • Suing Local Governments in Washington: The process is similar when suing local governments. First, file your claim with the respective local government’s governing body. This might vary, so check the specific procedures for your locality. After filing the claim, there’s a 60-day waiting period before you can initiate a lawsuit, during which the Statute of Limitations is paused.

For instance, if you filed a claim against a city government on July 1, 2023, you must wait until September 1, 2023, before you can proceed with your lawsuit. This impacts the funding decision timeline.

Comparative Negligence Rule: What It Means for Your Injury Claim in Washington

Washington’s “pure comparative negligence” rule (Wash. Rev. Code § 4.22.005) allows you to recover damages even if you are partly at fault. This means that even if you are found to be 99% responsible in an accident, you can still recover 1% of your damages.

Conversely, if you are 1% at fault, your compensation would be reduced by 1%. There is no threshold of fault (like 51%) that disqualifies you from recovering damages. However, your compensation is reduced by your fault percentage.

Liability and insurance laws in Washington highly influence lawsuit funding. In cases where liability is clear and the defendant has substantial insurance coverage, funding companies may be more inclined to offer higher injury loan amounts. However, in cases with disputed liability or minimal insurance coverage, the potential loan amount might be reduced.

Washington’s Auto Insurance System

Washington’s fault-based auto insurance system directly impacts the financial compensation you can request, and also influences your lawsuit funding potential.

Liability insurance requirements or other financial responsibility

In Washington, drivers must carry minimum insurance coverage, known as the “25/50/10 coverage” (Wash. Rev. Code § 46.29.260 – 2023):

  • $25,000 for individual injuries or deaths,
  • $50,000 for total injuries or deaths per accident and
  • $10,000 for property damage.

Let’s say you’re involved in an accident and the at-fault driver has the standard 25/50/10 coverage. The maximum you can receive for your injury from their insurance would be $25,000. In cases where the insurance coverage is limited, but the potential for a larger settlement exists (perhaps due to multiple liable parties or other sources of compensation), pre-settlement funding companies might provide funding up to 10% of the estimated total settlement value.

However, it’s important to remember that Baker Street Funding typically supports stronger cases where the estimated settlement or judgment value is realistically higher than the minimum insurance coverage. In the case of the 25/50/10 coverage, our focus would be on scenarios where additional compensation sources are likely, or where the defendant has assets or additional coverage that could contribute to a higher settlement amount.

Non-Economic Damages Caps

In Washington, there’s no cap on non-economic damages in personal injury cases. This means the potential for higher settlement amounts is there, which could be good news for your case. But here’s a twist: punitive damages, which are meant to penalize the wrongdoer, aren’t allowed in Washington. So, what does this mean for you when it comes to lawsuit funding? Well, most legal funding companies in Washington don’t usually consider non-economic damages or punitive damages as part of the actual recovery.

Liens and Subrogation Rights

Understanding liens and subrogation rights helps you realistically assess how much money you will have after all dues are cleared. This knowledge is particularly important when considering a settlement loan, as it will influence the amount you can borrow and how much you will ultimately have for your other expenses.

What Are Liens?

A lien is essentially a claim or legal right against your settlement amount. For instance, if you receive medical treatment for your injury and your health insurance company covers the costs, they might place a medical lien on your personal injury settlement. This means when you receive your settlement amount, you’re obligated to pay back the insurance company from that amount.

Impact on Settlement Loans: The presence of a lien can affect the net amount you receive from your settlement. For example, if you have a high medical lien, the amount you can take as an advance from a settlement loan might be reduced. This is because the lien has to be paid out of the settlement, reducing the actual amount you get in hand.

What Are Subrogation Rights?

Subrogation rights are somewhat similar to liens. They usually come into play when an insurance company pays for your expenses (like medical bills) related to the lawsuit. Essentially, through subrogation, the insurance company has the right to be repaid from your settlement for the expenses they covered.

Impact on Settlement Loans: When an insurance company exercises its subrogation rights, it reduces the net amount of your settlement that is available to you. Consequently, this could impact the amount you are eligible to receive from a lawsuit funding company. The lender will consider these subrogation rights when determining how much money they can safely lend you, as part of your potential settlement will be used to reimburse the insurance company.

Legal Precedents

The past can indeed influence the future, especially in court cases. Previous court decisions in Washington set a precedent that guides current decisions in new cases, specifically when it comes to determining liability and damages. These historical precedents can make predicting the outcome of your case easier.

If previous cases similar to yours have had certain outcomes, it gives a lawsuit funding company a clue about how your case might be resolved. Consequently, legal precedents in Washington affect the likelihood and the amount of personal injury funding you might receive.

Your Path Through Washington’s Civil Lawsuit Process.

When you’re involved in a personal injury legal dispute in Washington, the civil lawsuit process unfolds in several essential stages. Here’s a quick look at what to expect, and remember, Baker Street Funding’s lawsuit loans can support you at each step:

  1. Filing the Complaint: It all starts when your personal injury attorney files a complaint in a Washington court, laying out the harm you suffered and the legal responsibility of the defendant. During this initial stage, financial pressures can begin to mount, making early access to lawsuit funding a critical resource for plaintiffs in Washington.
  2. Serving the Defendant: Your lawyer will then formally notify the defendant about the lawsuit by serving them with the complaint. Here, the defendant has about 20 days to respond. Fast response or not, this period is critical as you prepare for possible negotiations or trial, where personal injury lawsuit funding can help you stay financially stable.
  3. Pre-Trial Activities: Before the trial, both sides might engage in pre-trial motions and discussions. This stage can include motions to dismiss the case, motions for summary judgment, or attempts to resolve the dispute through settlement talks or mediation. It’s here where having financial backing from settlement funding can empower you to negotiate from a position of strength.
  4. Discovery Phase: As both sides exchange information, evidence, and witness statements, the financial burden of the ongoing lawsuit process can be eased through funding. Discovery In Washington is a critical phase for gathering facts of the accident and building each side’s case, so being able to sustain yourself while your attorney builds a strong case is a smart option.
  5. Settlement Efforts: Many personal injury claims against insurance companies are resolved in this phase. With settlement funding, you’re better positioned to wait for a fair settlement offer rather than feeling pressured to accept a low initial offer due to financial constraints.
  6. Trial: If a settlement isn’t reached, the case proceeds to trial against the insurance company. Here, both parties present their evidence and arguments in front of a judge or jury. Funding can provide essential assistance during this potentially lengthy and costly phase.
  7. Post-Trial Motions and Appeals: After a verdict, there may be post-trial motions or appeals where the parties seek to overturn or modify the court’s decision. Given the nature of losing in pre-appeal cases, this stage might be less relevant for funding. However, it’s important for clients to understand that lawsuit funding is typically not available for cases that reach this stage.
  8. Judgment and Resolution: The case concludes either with the enforcement of a settlement or judgment, or after an appeal process, depending on the circumstances. In the event of a successful judgment or settlement against the insurance company, the process moves towards enforcing and collecting the awarded amount. At this stage, Baker Street Funding also offers post-settlement funding options in Washington. This means that even after your personal injury case has reached a resolution, we can provide financial relief to tide you over until the lawsuit’s recovery is fully disbursed. This service is particularly valuable in scenarios where there might be a delay in receiving the settlement amount or award, so it ensures that your financial needs continue to be met during this final phase.

Personal injury legal funding is designed to support you up until this point of resolution. Any lawsuit funding amount taken out during the pendency of your personal injury case is then repaid from the recovered amount.

Dealing with Prolonged Personal Injury Cases in Washington.

The statistics presented paint a vivid picture of the reality faced by personal injury claimants in Washington. From the alarming number of slip and fall incidents to the sobering figures of car accidents, each number represents real people suffering difficulties while waiting for a personal injury case to resolve.

Unfortunately, in Washington, just as in many other states, personal injury lawsuits can become prolonged. Insurance companies frequently extend the litigation process, resulting in settlements and judgments that drag on for months or even years. This drawn-out timeline can place tremendous financial and emotional pressure on injured plaintiffs. Many find themselves compelled to accept lower settlement offers simply to alleviate immediate financial burdens.

In light of these difficulties, it becomes increasingly clear why accessible lawsuit funding solutions are more than just financial aids; they are crucial lifelines. By providing the necessary monetary support, lawsuit funding enables you to pursue your litigation with the assurance that your immediate financial needs are met. It allows you to resist the pressure of accepting a lowball offer 2efrom defense attorneys and insurers.

Key insights and next steps.

In the midst of personal injury litigation and financial uncertainty in Washington, understanding the key facets of lawsuit funding equips you to handle the difficulties of your legal battle with both knowledge and the right financial support.

From auto accident lawsuits such as bus, commercial vehicle, hit and runs, semi-truck 18 wheelerto workplace injury claimsmedical malpractice or slip and fall cases,  Baker Street Funding’s expertise is in offering lawsuit loans that fill the financial void between the occurrence of an injury and your eventual settlement. We encourage you to reach out to us for your personal injury claim funding needs in Washington today.


Who is eligible for a personal injury loan in Washington? 

Eligibility for a personal injury loan in Washington primarily depends on the strength of your legal case. If you have filed a personal injury lawsuit in Washington and are represented by an attorney, you might be eligible. The key factors considered by funding companies include the merits of your case, the likelihood of a successful settlement or judgment in Washington, and compliance with the state’s legal statutes, such as the statute of limitations. Also, that your credit score and employment status do not affect eligibility for these loans.

How does the “pure comparative negligence” rule in Washington impact my loan amount? 

Under Washington’s “pure comparative negligence” rule, if you are found partially at fault in your personal injury case, your compensation—and consequently the potential loan amount – may be reduced. For instance, if you are deemed 20% at fault in an accident, your total compensation, and by extension the amount you can receive as a pre-settlement loan, would be reduced by 20%. Funding companies consider this rule when assessing the risk and potential recovery amount of your case.

Are there any restrictions on how I can use a personal injury loan in Washington? 

Generally, there are no strict restrictions on how you can use a personal injury loan in Washington. These loans are designed to provide financial relief during the duration of your lawsuit, and you can use the funds for a variety of purposes, including medical expenses, living costs, transportation, or to cover any financial gaps caused by the inability to work due to injury. However, it’s always wise to discuss the intended use of the funds with your funding company and legal counsel to ensure it aligns with your case value and financial needs.

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