For most car owners, the aftermath of a vehicular accident can be a distressing ordeal, especially if they sustained injuries. One way to help you make the right moves is to fully understand the basics of negotiating a settlement after the accident.
Remember that it’s possible to acquire an auto accident settlement that considers your injuries, the pain and suffering, along with other losses, such as damage to your vehicle and losing your wages due to absences from work.
Working with a reliable car accident lawyer can help you go through the claim negotiation and settlement procedure. If you want to learn more on how to settle a car accident, checking out reliable sources would help. Other useful tips you can apply to your case may include the following:
- File For A Claim Right After The Car Accident
After your involvement in a vehicular accident, your first move should be to get in touch with your insurance provider immediately. Make it a priority to file a claim right after the accident so that you can recall all the pertinent details about the event as accurately as possible. The earlier you contact your insurance company, the more precise the details you’ll provide.
- Maintain Accuracy About The Event
You must keep a record of the vehicular accident in sequential order. When filing your documents, these should include the police accident report, if available, along with the receipts for car repairs, records of appointments with your doctor, and any type of data that’s relevant to your accident.
Remember that you’ll depend on these documentations during the negotiations. When you have these documents on hand, it can help speed up the settlement process.
- Compute A Fair Settlement
Before you forward a demand letter to your insurance provider, you should figure out the overall worth of your claim. Once you settle for a decent range, you should take into consideration the following:
- Medical and other related expenses
- Total income you lost due to your injuries
- Whether you sustain permanent disability or will require long-term medical care
- Any suffering or pain you had to go through after the accident
- The expenses of fixing or replacing your car and any other property with damages due to the accident
- Submit A Demand Letter To Your Insurance Provider
After calculating what you believe your claim is worth, you can submit a demand letter to your insurance provider.
The letter should clearly describe details of the vehicular accident, including your injuries, medical treatment, current health issues, how severe the damage to your vehicle is, and any other losses due to the accident.
You should clearly state the amount of money you’re demanding due to the circumstances. Since insurance providers might reply with an offer for an amount that’s lower than what you’re requesting in the demand letter, make it a point to ask between 25% and 100% more than what you’re willing to settle for.
Make sure that you have proof and proper documentation to support all the details in your demand letter. Remember that it might prevent you from receiving an offer you genuinely deserve if you lack concrete evidence.
- Decline The First Offer
Always remember that insurance companies aim to maximize profit and will attempt to pay as minimally as possible for your claim. With this in mind, refuse the initial offer since it’s likely to be too low.
You can ask to provide specific reasons for the low offer. Provide a reply letter, wherein you explain why you can’t accept the offer. Wait if the insurance provider will boost its offer.
If the initial offer is reasonable but still low, you can counter it with a slightly lower amount than what you stated in the demand letter. If you provide a suitable counteroffer, the insurance provider will likely compromise.
- Put Everything In Writing
Always take note of everything, especially during conversations with the insurance company. You can also request for the settlement offers to be presented as documents.
Once you reach an agreement, it should be noted in a written document, with a date and with signatures by all parties involved in the agreement.
- Know When To Employ The Services Of A Lawyer
If you find it burdensome to reach a fair settlement agreement after negotiations with the insurance provider, it might be time to work with a car accident lawyer. Working with a professional will help assess your circumstances and decide whether a personal injury lawsuit is needed.
If you’re having difficulty juggling everything that happens after your involvement in a car accident, it’s best to work with a lawyer. Before looking for the right one to hire, learning these tips on negotiating your settlement after a car accident will help put you on the right path and ensure a good outcome.