After an accident injury, you may confront a lot of undue stress thinking about paying for medical bills, rehabilitation, and other expenses while you recover. When the insurance company reaches out to settle your claim, it may be tempting to accept their initial settlement offer. However, it’s essential to consider whether the proposal is enough to cover all of your losses before agreeing.
Insurance companies are in the business of making profits and will not consider the full extent of your damages in the initial settlement offer. If you’ve been injured and the insurance company is attempting to settle your claim quickly, speak with an experienced Montgomery County personal injury lawyer from Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford, P.C. We are here to help you understand your rights and legal options.
Understanding the Insurance Company’s Settlement Process
After filing an injury claim, you’ll be contacted by the appointed insurance adjuster handling your claim. The insurance company’s process to settle your claim may slightly vary but typically includes the following:
- Interview with the insured: The insurance adjuster will interview you to document your version of the accident in detail. The adjuster will later compare your statements to police reports relating to your accident.
- Investigation of the victim: The adjuster will conduct a background investigation to learn how many personal injury claims you’ve filed. They will likely research your social media accounts as well as other public information.
- Investigation of the claim: The adjuster will conduct a thorough inquiry into your claim to start estimating an initial offer. The analysis generally involves reviewing witness statements, medical records, and the accident scene.
- Estimating the settlement value: The insurance adjuster will usually try to determine the settlement value of your injury claim by considering how much damage you can prove and the probability of winning in court.
- Initial settlement offer: At this point, the insurance company may respond to a demand for payment and offer an initial settlement.
- Negotiations: Your injury attorney may counter the insurance company’s offer and negotiate for a higher value. This step may involve several back-and-forth discussions as both parties argue their case.
- Final settlement: In the end, you’ll reach an agreement with the insurance company and settle your injury claim. After your legal costs and fees are deducted, you’ll receive a final settlement payment.
In some instances, insurance companies do not agree to a reasonable amount of compensation. In that case, your attorney may discuss the option of filing a legal action to pursue compensation for damages, which may require arguing your case before a judge or jury in court.
How Should I Respond to the Initial Settlement Offer?
Most initial settlement offers are far lower than what victims’ injury claims are worth after the full scope of damages is considered. Your attorney will need to examine the insurance company’s initial offer along with their justification for the proposed amount.
An experienced personal injury attorney may provide further details to bolster your claim or to oppose the statements in the insurance company’s settlement offer.
How Do I Counter a Low Initial Settlement Offer?
If the insurance company offers you a lowball settlement offer, you must reject it in writing. Your attorney can craft a fitting response that states:
- Your intention to reject the settlement offer
- Why you believe you deserve more compensation
- Your counteroffer of an amount you’d be prepared to accept
At Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford, P.C., our injury attorneys explain this process in detail to our clients and manage the negotiations with the insurance companies so our clients can concentrate on their recovery.
Knowing When You’ve Reached the Highest Settlement Offer
It is essential that you partner with a personal injury attorney who is experienced in handling your specific type of injury case and understands the potential value of your claim. Depending on your injuries’ severity, it may be challenging to determine the full cost of future and ongoing medical treatments and therapy.
When accident injuries result in a permanent disability, victims are entitled to compensation for loss of enjoyment of life and other comparable losses that must be factored in the settlement value. Personal injury attorneys often advise that you wait until you completely heal from your injuries before accepting a final settlement offer.
Contact Experienced Personal Injury Lawyers in Montgomery County After an Injury Accident
At Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford, P.C., our team of injury lawyers is composed of seasoned negotiators committed to protecting our clients’ best interests. For over 65 years, our injury attorneys have advocated for injured victims in Montgomery County and across the state of Pennsylvania.
If you’ve been injured, we are here to help you understand your legal options and guide you through this challenging time. To speak with a knowledgeable injury lawyer over a free consultation, complete a contact form or call today at (215) 822-7575.