How long do I have to accept a settlement offered in mediation?

by Dave
(Florida USA)

I was in a Mediation about three weeks ago and was offered about 25% of what we were asking. I need to know, how long do I have to accept that offer? I have since been offered a job out of country for 24 months and want to accept the offer. This mediation took place in Florida. I have insurance that will buy my prescriptions and provide medical coverage. Thank You.

Visitor Question:
Disclaimer: Information provided in our response is NOT formal legal advice. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Under no circumstances should the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site be relied upon when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Our response does NOT create an attorney-client relationship. Always get a formal case review from a licensed attorney in your area.

ANSWER for "How long do I have to accept a settlement offered in mediation?":

Dave (Florida USA):

The determination of the length of time you have to accept or deny the mediation offer will primarily depend on the amount of time the defendant has left the offer open. The facts you present don't indicate whether the defendant left the time period open, or whether a time limitation was made part of the offer.

Secondly, you must be concerned about the statute of limitations period. The statute of limitations for the filing of a personal injury lawsuit in the State of Florida is 4 years.

You also may want to consider the possible loss of leverage. If you leave the area before you settle your claim, you will have a more difficult time using the filing of a lawsuit as leverage if your claim isn't settled for an amount you want.

If you have to file a lawsuit you may have to fly back into town to deal with attorneys, pretrial hearings, etc. If you haven't yet hired an attorney you might want to consult with one now. Most personal injury attorneys won't charge for an initial office consultation. Make several appointments and bring copies of all the documentation related to your case. By seeking a consultation you'll have a better idea of where you stand and the actions you must take.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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