After a personal injury, the insurance company usually steps in and may offer a settlement to resolve the matter. This first settlement offer is usually not enough to cover all the expenses incurred from the accident, let alone the compensation necessary for pain and suffering.
If an insurance company offers a lowball offer to you or a loved one after an accident, it is important to contact a knowledgeable Windsor personal injury lawyer at Greg Monforton & Partners. We understand how confusing this process is and what you will need to know when confronting the insurance carrier.
The Insurance Adjuster’s Settlement Offer Process
When an insurance company receives notice of a claim, the insurance adjuster assigned will conduct an investigation and begin the work to provide an initial offer. However, this offer usually does not provide future costs for ongoing medical care and other losses. Knowing that an accident victim needs money quickly to help cover expenses, the insurer will make a low-ball offer in hopes he or she will accept it.
Some injuries are more complex than initially diagnosed, and this could leave you paying out-of-pocket costs. These could include the following:
- Hospitalization for more serious injuries
- Corrective Surgery
- Necessary physical therapy
- Additional medical treatment
It is important to reach full recovery status before considering an offer so that all known expenses are made part of your demand. This can be done with the help of licensed lawyer by your side.
How to Respond to a Settlement Offer
When offered an initial settlement for the accident, you will need to consider how to respond. It is generally a wise decision to seek legal advice from an experienced lawyer before doing so. He or she may explain that a polite refusal is the best response.
During these first steps, a demand letter should be drafted that includes the costs of all damages and other information that is relevant to your situation. A lawyer can guide you through this process and help you calculate the value of your damages. Then, it is time to get ready for a counteroffer and additional settlement offers.
What Happens If You Reject the Initial Offer?
The insurance company usually offers around 40 percent of the true value of a claim for its first offer. Insurers are aware that you may reject this initial offer and will generally counteroffer. The steps often proceed as follows:
- The insurance company makes the first offer, which is much less than the true value of the claim
- With a lawyer, respond with a demand letter and ask for more than the offered amount
- Both parties will then exchange letters and adjust the settlement amount
- Arrive at a final offer that is agreeable by both parties and then sign a release of liability form and wait to receive a settlement check from the insurer
Knowing When to Accept a Settlement
Consider not accepting a settlement offer until you fully recover from your injuries. It is important to remain patient and not accept a settlement too quickly. A standard settlement may not offer the necessary compensation because your injuries may be more severe than what the insurer is aware of.
Once you know all the factors involved, your lawyer can demand a fair settlement after calculating your damages. Once a settlement close to the true value of your claim is negotiated, then it is time to accept.
Contact Our Team to Learn More
If you have been injured in an accident, we recommend that you seek legal representation as soon as possible. We often obtain fair compensation on behalf of our clients. We can communicate with the insurance companies on your behalf so you can focus on recovering.
Our firm works on a contingency fee basis, so you do not have to worry about paying for our services until the claim is successful. Reach out today either by phone or online for your free consultation.
We are available 24/7 to discuss your situation. Call (866) 320-4770.