If you got hurt on someone else’s property, you might be wondering if you should accept a cash settlement from the insurance company adjuster for your premises liability injury. The short answer is that you should make sure the insurer is offering you a fair amount before you agree to settle your claim. A lawyer from our firm can help you evaluate any settlement offers, as it may be difficult to determine what qualifies as a fair offer.
While some insurance companies sympathize with accident victims, insurance companies may try to offer as little money as possible for their claims. No matter how friendly the claims adjuster might act, he or she may be trying to minimize their company’s losses. We can help you seek the best possible outcome for a settlement.
How to Build a Strong Foundation for a Settlement in Your Case
The aftermath of an accident may seem chaotic. However, taking a few important actions can make a big difference in setting a foundation for your claim. Taking these steps can help you establish strong evidence for a case and help you secure a fair settlement value.
Here are some things you should do after an accident:
Complete Your Prescribed Medical Treatment
You should finish any therapy or other treatment your doctor recommends after the accident. This way, you can document the full extent of your treatment needs–and show the full range of your injury’s costs. If you do not complete your treatment, the insurer may try to argue that you made your own condition worse and may try to reduce your settlement offer as a result.
Understand the Scope of Your Injuries Before You Settle Your Injury Claim
Sometimes, people settle their injury claims before they fully understand their treatment needs. For instance, you may go back to your doctor after completing physical therapy and find out that you need additional treatment, like surgery. The insurer will not pay for any medical bills or lost wages after you settle your claim.
Understand the Documents You Sign When You Settle
After settling your premises liability injury claim, you will need to sign certain documents. This will include a waiver of the right to sue the at-fault party for anything else from the accident. If you later discover a problem, like impairment from your injuries, you will be out of luck.
Include All of Your Damages in the Claim
You cannot come back and ask the insurer for more money after you sign the settlement documents, so be sure that all your losses are included in your injury claim. The American Bar Association (ABA) notes that medical bills, lost wages, and future medical bills are potential recoverable losses in personal injury cases.
What to Avoid in Your Premises Liability Accident
There are some things that can hurt your claim in the early stages after an accident. Be aware of and avoid these common scenarios:
Lowball Settlement Offers
Unless you work in the liability insurance or personal injury legal fields, you may not know the full monetary value of your injury claim. Insurance companies know this, and sometimes they throw out a lowball settlement offer in hopes that you will accept it.
The Claims Adjuster Delaying the Settlement
States limit the amount of time an injured person has to file a lawsuit against the person who hurt them. Negotiating with the insurer does not pause this time limit. The ABA says that if you miss the deadline, you may not be able to seek compensation through a suit.
The Insurance Company Asking for a Recorded Statement
The claims adjuster might ask you to provide a recorded statement, supposedly to “tell your side of the story.” In reality, the insurer can take your words out of context in an attempt to devalue your claim. Sometimes adjusters even use these statements to blame the injured person for the accident.
There are many potential complications that can delay your case and compromise your settlement offer. However, we can fight for you to even the playing field and protect you from bad faith insurance tactics. We can help you with negotiation techniques and other strategies to help your case progress, and move toward the best possible settlement outcome.
Call the Attorneys at Bernstein & Poisson Today for Help
Call Bernstein & Poisson today for your free consultation. We do not charge upfront legal fees. We have more than 60 years of combined experience and have won hundreds of millions of dollars for our clients.