Filing a car accident lawsuit can be a long and daunting process, not to mention the expensive costs associated with it. The process is made even worse by the uncertainty of obtaining the best compensation possible.
While its sensible and humane that accident victims should be fully settled for their injuries and losses, the sad reality is that insurance companies with their team of high flying defense lawyers will bring out their A game to ensure that they pay the least compensation irrespective of how severe or life changing the injuries are. In worst cases, they will refuse to pay anything at all, arguing that the injured victim was equally responsible for the accident. In this case, one would need to pay for the medical expenses, potential wage loss, and emotional damages out of pocket, which might have a significant impact on their finances.
If you are the injured person in an accident, you need to approach the process strategically – by lawyering up. If you don’t have a lawyer in mind, you can ask for a referral or search for the best car accident lawyer near me online. An experience attorney is your best shot at getting the right compensation. Remember, the insurance company works with high-end lawyers; you won’t stand a chance if you choose to go alone.
Here are some negotiation tips and tricks and how personal injury attorneys can help out.
Substantiate your case
When filing a personal injury claim, it is critical to prove that the extent of your injuries and losses is proportionate to the settlement you wish to recover. Having all the medical and wage-related documents gives you an upper hand against the insurance firm trying to reduce your settlement. This is to say that you need to have documents and receipts of all expenses and losses (like lost wages) that you’ve incurred from the moment of the accident to that of negotiations. Your lawyer may also collaborate with other professional like economists, mechanics, therapists, doctors and accident reconstructionists to gauge the current and future costs.
Know your worth
When the process is just getting started, some insurance adjuster will offer a “take-it-or-leave-it” deal. If you don’t know your worth, you will likely take the settlement, even though it won’t cover for your expenses and losses. Since lawyers deal with such cases frequently, and work with several other professionals for the good of their clients, they will be able to inform you of the worth of your case. Knowing your worth is a big step in securing the best possible settlement for your case.
Steer clear of lowball offers
It’s easy for anyone in your position to say “something is better than nothing” and end up taking whatever is thrown their way by insurance adjusters. However, you should realize that insurance companies are never on your side. The fact that they are trying to settle your suit as first as they can doesn’t translate to concern or care. So, you shouldn’t accept any offer. Instead, have your lawyer take care of the issue and re-approach the negotiation table with substantial answers to any claim that the adjuster may try to raise.
Understand statute of limitation
It’s important to note that you only have a limited time (often two years) to file a personal injury claim, after which the law bars you from filing. Your lawyer will work with you to ensure that everything is done within the stipulated timeframe so that you don’t get locked out.