Do I accept the first settlement offer in my injury case? | The brown firm


Steps to Respond to a Low Settlement Offer

Some people think they can handle insurance companies on their own, but it’s always a good idea to work with an experienced lawyer, especially if you are recovering from an injury.

A personal injury lawyer can help you understand and calculate the true value of your personal injury case, work with the insurance company on your behalf, and protect you from the benefits of lowball deals.

If you receive a low settlement offer from your insurance company, you and hopefully your lawyer can take the following steps to get you the settlement you deserve:

Stay calm and analyze your offer

As with everything in life, it’s never a good idea to react emotionally after receiving a low offer. It is an even bigger mistake to accept it lest it be the best they do.

No matter how upset you are or how badly you need money, never ruin the professional relationship you have with other parties. Things you say and do can be sued against you if you try to renegotiate the offer.

Keep in mind that the insurance company’s initial offer will be the lowest offer it thinks it can get away with and serves as a starting point for negotiations.

And remember that if you have short-term financial hardship while your personal injury case is ongoing, your lawyer can often help you delay paying your medical bills until a settlement or verdict is reached. be returned.

To ask questions

Once you are confident that you can control your emotions, you can start asking questions. Find out why the claims adjuster made the offer they made. Ask your claims adjuster to explain how he made his offer based on the information he has.

Your adjuster should give you the reasons for making his decision if he decides to deny your claim. Their responses can guide you on how to respond with an appropriate counteroffer.

For example, as we mentioned above, if your offer was not enough or it was declined due to missing information, provide them with the information they need in your counter offer.

Present the facts

Everything must be documented after your accident. Your injuries, medical bills, property damage, lost wages and any other damage documents can serve as valuable evidence to support your claim. The more evidence you have, the easier it will be to prove your claim.

Having the necessary paperwork to save the amount you think will be needed to cover your damage makes it harder for your insurance company to send you a lowball offer.

Presenting your claims adjuster with all the facts, backed up by a paper trail, will likely force them to make you a better offer to settle.

Develop a counter-offer

With all of your documentation, and after carefully considering your adjuster’s offer, you and your lawyer can develop a counteroffer.

Other factors you will need to consider when developing your counteroffer could be the limits of the insurance policies or the offender’s personal property if the limits of the insurance policy are not sufficient to pay for your damages. .

There may be multiple offers and counter-offers made during settlement negotiations. In fact, even after a lawsuit is filed, settlement negotiations can still continue, until the trial begins.

It will be up to you and your lawyer to decide what you are willing to accept for your claim. If you fail to come to a fair settlement during negotiations, you may need to take your claim to court.

Reply in writing

Your lawyer will help you draft a formal response in the form of a formal notice to the initial offer informing the insurer that you are rejecting the offer.

When writing the letter, you and your attorney may point out incorrect assumptions made by the insurance company that made the initial offer too low. Your written response should include additional details that were initially omitted, such as proof of loss of income, up-to-date medical records and bills, details of police reports, and details of your non-economic damages, such as the way pain and suffering affects your life.

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