After an injury accident, the injury victim can file a claim with the insurance company. The injured driver or passenger may seek damages related to the accident, including medical bills, loss of income, and property damage. However, the insurance company may only offer to cover a portion of your losses. When should you accept a settlement offer from the insurance company after an accident?
Only accept a settlement offer after you understand your rights and options. You may have the legal right to recover more money. If you have questions about whether a settlement offer is the right decision, talk to an experienced Denver accident lawyer for advice.
Understand All of Your Damages After an Accident
One of the problems injury victims have is underestimating their total losses after an accident. If you get rear ended, your losses may include more than just the property damage caused by the crash. If you have to go to the doctor, get pain medication, or are unable to return to work for a few days, those are all damages associated with the car accident.
In serious accidents, the actual damages may be very costly. Some injuries are permanent or require continuing treatment for years. Extensive damage is common in neck, back, and head injuries. These types of injuries may cause chronic pain, restrict movement, limit job function, and require regular visits to the doctors office. Do not sell yourself short after an injury accident. If the other driver caused permanent damage, the driver and their insurance company should compensate you for your losses.
Calculate Economic and Non-Economic Damages
In a personal injury accident claim, the injury victim may be able to claim both economic damages and non-economic damages. Economic damages include medical bills, loss of income, and car repair bills. However, most people don't think of the non-economic damages they may have suffered. An injury carries harmful results beyond just the financial cost. It can also cause harm to the victim, change their quality of life, and hurt those around them. Non-economic damages in an injury accident may include:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Why the Insurance Company Makes Low Ball Offers
Insurance companies make lowball offers because they are in the business of making money. If the insurance company can get away with injury victims accepting lower settlements, they will. Insurance agents and claims adjusters work for the insurance company and they have an interest in saving the company money, even if it means paying someone less than they deserve.
There are some insurance company strategies to get injury victims to accept a lowball settlement. Many people do not have the savings put away to pay for expensive medical bills or live without a paycheck if they can't work. Delaying the claim process can make the injury victim more desperate for any payment, even if they have to accept a lower settlement. The injury victim may feel like they have to take the payment because they can't wait any longer.
The insurance company may also make it seem like the injury victim only has a limited opportunity to accept the settlement, or risk getting nothing. Giving the injury victim a limited amount of time to consider the settlement can be a way of trying to make sure the injured driver does not have time to contact a lawyer for advice. Don't sign a settlement before you have the opportunity to talk to a lawyer for help.
Insurance Companies Understand How a Lawyer Can Help You
The insurance companies understand that when you have a lawyer representing you in a car accident claim, they need to take your case more seriously. It is not uncommon for the settlement offer to suddenly increase as soon as your lawyer calls the insurance company. Your attorney can deal with the insurance companies so you can focus on getting better and getting back to work. Contact the Denver Legal Eagles today at 303-642-8888 for a free consultation.