Your personal injury lawyer will tell you that you’ll likely receive a letter or phone call from the defendant’s insurance company within a few weeks of the accident. The adjuster will offer you a ridiculously low settlement amount. Your personal injury lawyer will tell you not to accept this offer because your case will be permanently settled if you do. You will not be able to sue the defendant for more money later on even if you really need and deserve it.
First offer is generally a ‘low ball’ offer
If you’ve ever been in a car accident where the other driver was at fault, you worked with your personal injury lawyer to file a personal injury claim or case against the defendant. His or her insurance company probably responded immediately with an offer. You should know that this offer is low on purpose. You should also know that the offer will NOT be the insurance company’s last offer. You have to remember that the insurance adjuster has a job of settling your claim as quickly as possible with as low of a settlement as possible.
What you can expect after the first offer
Your personal injury lawyer in Amherst will tell you to expect the following after the first offer. If you decline the first offer, the insurance adjuster will come back to you with a slightly higher offer. You should decline this as well. In the meantime, you and your lawyer should be drafting a demand letter that contains the following components:
● A description of the accident
● a clear explanation as to why the other driver is at fault
● The cost and description of all of the medical treatment you have received because of the accident.
● An itemized list of all other economic losses you have incurred because of the accident
● A summary of the ways in which the car accident has affected you in non-financial ways
● A counter-offer
The defendant’s insurance company will begin real discussions when it receives this demand letter. Expect constant communication between your lawyer and the insurance adjuster during this time period.You decide when it’s time to settle with the input from your personal injury lawyer.
Remember the maximum medical improvement rule
Never settle until you’ve reached a state of Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI). you’ll need to understand the full nature and extent of your injuries, the future medicalcare you’ll need, and its projected cost.As is evident, the offer process from the defendant’s insurance company is far from ‘cut and dry.’ You need to hire a good personal injury lawyer for this reason.