When you file a car accident claim, at some point you or your San Diego car accident lawyer will likely be negotiating with an insurance company for your settlement amount. Whether the accident was the fault of another driver, a defective part, a road hazard, or something else, there’s probably an insurance company representing the responsible party.
The process of negotiating a settlement can sometimes be difficult, and consulting with an injury lawyer with experience dealing with insurance companies can be a big boost to your case. Here’s what you need to know in order to negotiate a car accident settlement.
Steps for Car Accident Settlement Negotiation
One of the first things you should do after suffering injuries in a car accident is visit your doctor.
Not only will this allow you to receive the treatment you need for your injuries—it also will give you a clearer understanding of the cost of your medical treatment.
Medical bills and related charges are just one of the damages that can comprise your car accident settlement, alongside lost income, emotional damages, and others.
Furthermore, taking the step of visiting a doctor after your accident allows your injuries to be recorded in your official medical record and indicates to the insurance adjuster that you took your injuries seriously enough to visit a doctor for treatment.
Some other tips for for negotiating your car accident settlement include:
- Have an idea of the amount you expect to receive. – Beyond your medical bills and economic damages, how much do you expect to receive for pain and suffering, or loss of enjoyment of life? It’s a good idea to have a ballpark figure and plan to negotiate further if the initial offer is far from what you expected.
- Don’t just accept the first offer. – The insurance companies will generally try to pay you the least amount of money possible. Like any other business, the insurance companies keep costs low by paying the least possible where they can. For that reason, don’t expect to receive all the money you’re looking for in the first offer. However, if you’re still not getting closer to what you expected after multiple rounds of communication, you may need to start considering alternatives.
- Have an attorney review your demand letter. – Making sure your initial contact effectively conveys the scope of your expectations for a settlement is crucial. Don’t be afraid to clearly state your injuries and the amount of money you’re seeking. At this stage and going forward, it can be vital to have an attorney who knows how to negotiate with the insurers on your case.
- Know how to work with the adjuster. – One common mistake that plaintiffs in car accident cases make is making a statement that the insurance adjuster can use to deny their claim. This may seem like a harmless part of the investigation into the accident, but when dealing with the adjuster, stick to the facts of your injuries and damages without giving away too much extraneous information that could later be used against you.
Contact a Car Accident Lawyer for Help Negotiating
Dealing with the insurance company after a car accident is a headache. Let us do it for you.
Contact an experienced car accident lawyer with The Kindley Firm, APC, at 619-550-1313 or by filling out the form below.