Among the most difficult things to deal with after an automobile accident is the insurance claim. Insurance providers usually contact their clients after a few days and attempt to settle their claims as soon as possible. Note that an insurance adjuster’s role is safeguarding the insurer’s interest, and they are trained to reduce the value of each claim. Even when the at-fault driver cooperates with his or her insurance service, the insurer may still delay or deny offsetting the claim. Thus, their first proposition is usually a lowball settlement. After an automobile collision, most individuals require funds to fix their vehicles and may fall for the first offer. This post will explain how to identify an unfair insurance payment.
How to Determine an Unfair Auto Crash Settlement
To ascertain the precise worth of your claim, you need to acquire insight into how an auto-wreck value is calculated. The severity of the vehicle accident as well as several other factors are crucial in this estimation. A Seattle car accident lawyer will assist in estimating a fair settlement figure after reviewing the following facets of the personal injury case:
The intensity of the damage to your automobile plays a vital role when valuing your claim. For instance, is the vehicle completely wrecked? What’s the cost of major repairs? For totaled cars, you’re entitled to the car’s value during the accident.
Some injuries are permanent. When your auto accident injuries take away or minimize your earning capacity, then the settlement offer should include this loss. Regardless of the severity of injuries, they could devastate your career. For instance, losing both legs in an accident can destroy an athlete’s career but may only result in lost wages for a librarian during the recovery period.
Inuries also take time to recover from, and spending time away from work costs money. A fair auto crash settlement has to cover these losses. This aspect also applies when you are reduced to working part time or fewer hours. You’re eligible for compensation when a medical expert confirms that you can’t work.
When the medical expenses are related to psychological distress, the insurance company should carry bills such as therapy, prescriptions, counselling, and other types of mental health treatment expenses due to the auto accident. Consult a lawyer if your mental health care costs should be included in the car accident settlement.
Getting Past Low Settlement Offers
Many adjusters take their time when making settlement offers. Despite pressure to pay claims quickly, they are also obligated to hold on to the insurer’s funds as long as they can.
Every adjuster has his or her typical negotiation technique. Some may leave you hanging to see if you can ask to settle for a lower value. Adjusters handle a glut of cases daily and may take time to attend to yours; however, some regions require insurance firms to negotiate claims with good faith, for instance, they should give their feedback without unreasonable delay.
When Negotiations Halt
Keep an eye on the legal deadline referred to as the statute of limitations. Adjusters know that if you fail to settle the injury claim or sue before the deadline lapses, you won’t be eligible to recover a penny. If an adjuster offers an unreasonable settlement or claims, you were at fault, ensure you consult a reputable attorney regarding your options. Note that most injury lawyers don’t charge for initial consultation fees.
Unfair Settlement Practices by Insurance Companies
Request Recorded Statements
Besides offering quick or delayed payments, adjusters may prompt victims to record their version of the accident’s activities. Although this may sound like a reasonable request, remember that your statement could be used by the insurer to offer a lesser settlement value. When asked to record a statement, politely decline the request and consult an attorney.
Alter or Misrepresent
Insurance adjusters may assert that only a particular figure is available for the award even though it might not be the exact figure stipulated in the policy. Rather than accepting this information at face value, contract an attorney to go through the policies and ascertain the precise limits of the policy and any problems that could affect the coverage.