How to Negotiate a Personal Injury Settlement
If your personal injury is the result of someone else’s negligence, you can expect that party’s insurance provider to make a settlement offer. The following tips can help you get the damages you deserve.
Determine a Satisfactory Settlement Amount
Take the time to carefully review all of your losses to come up with a complete list of damages you hope to obtain. This list should include:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Lost earning potential
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage
Be sure to collect medical bills with doctors’ statements about your condition that project your recovery time.
Prepare To Reject an Initial Offer
One of an insurance adjuster’s roles is to keep your settlement offer as low as possible. If you receive an offer that is far from your own calculations, you may be dealing with an insurance adjuster who is counting on your ignorance for your case’s value. In that situation, you can submit a counteroffer with evidence to support the amount you have in mind. Make sure to include photos of property damage and physical injuries, police and hospital reports, and eyewitness statements.
Request Justification for an Offer
Sometimes it can be challenging to know if you have a reasonable offer before you. Ask the adjuster to explain in detail the process for calculating the damages. Understanding the offer’s justification will help you determine if you should reject it or seriously consider accepting it.
Insurance adjusters can be notorious for stretching out the claims process. This is often a tactic they use to force you to settle for a lower amount than you deserve. They sometimes assume you are anxious to settle quickly because of mounting medical bills and lost wages. Although this may be true, your willingness to accept a settlement too soon could keep you from realizing the true value of your claim.
Avoid Contact With The Insurance Company
Unless you are a skillful negotiator and you can afford to partake in a long negotiation with an insurance adjuster, you may want to engage with an attorney who can negotiate a settlement on your behalf. Personal injury attorneys are familiar with the tactics insurance adjusters employ and adjusters know this. You are more likely to receive a reasonable settlement offer sooner if you have an experienced attorney on your side.
The physical, emotional and financial damages you endure from a personal injury that is someone else’s fault can be overwhelming. If you are looking for a personal injury lawyer in Harrisonburg, Va to help with a potential case, consider contacting a firm like MartinWren, P.C.