The settlement process can be time-consuming and exhausting. One way to get through the process is to know what to expect. To better help you understand the process so that you can properly prepare for negotiations, here is what you need to know about settlements.
What Is the Average Settlement Amount?
Contrary to popular belief, there is no average amount for a settlement. Each case is different and there are various factors that are used to determine how each case is valued. Even though two people might have similar injuries, it is possible that two different settlement amounts could be offered.
For instance, liability could influence how much is offered. If two people have similar injuries from a car accident and one of the drivers shares some responsibility for the accident, it is possible the blameless driver might receive more in settlement. The insurance company might feel that the partially liable driver should also share some of the responsibility for the resulting injuries and damages.
What Can You Do to Improve Your Settlement Amount?
One way you can ensure a fair settlement is to not accept the first offer you receive right away. The first offer from insurance adjusters is typically lower than the amount deserved. Carefully consider the offer and compare it to what you believe to be a fair offer. If it seems unfair, do not accept it. You should instead contact the insurance adjuster and ask that he or she offer an explanation for the low offer.
You can use the information gathered to tailor your response to the adjuster. For instance, if he or she stated that your injuries were not that serious, you can counter with medical records that prove otherwise and a counteroffer for what you are willing to accept. You also need to focus on any emotional points that you have that work to your advantage. If you have a photo showing the extent of your injuries, include a copy with your counteroffer. The photo could be the motivation needed to push for a fairer settlement. The adjuster knows that a picture could potentially sway a jury and wants to keep the case out of court.
Consider consulting with a personal injury lawyer if you have not yet. He or she can help with developing a more detailed strategy to garner a fair settlement. For more information, talk to an experienced personal injury lawyer.Share