Insurance companies are notorious for making settlement offers to victims. Sometimes these offers may seem to be lofty and impressive. However, victims need to be cautious about accepting them. This is because once they sign the agreement and accept the offer it cannot be reversed even if future damages or injuries are discovered. The following points highlight a few things that all accident victims need to keep in mind about settlement offers.
Future Medical Costs
The quick response to offer settlements to victims may appear to be a sincere concern. Insurance companies want to settle cases as quickly as possible, and paying out the least amount in settlements as possible saves their companies money. They may not include future medical costs such as physical rehabilitation or counseling in their calculations.
Pain and Suffering
Some events that result in personal injuries can cause depression or other issues. There are cases that involve car wrecks where the victim lived but a loved one expired. This may have caused things such as PTSD, anxiety, depression, nightmares, or mood swings. Pain and suffering may not last forever, but it can last a lifetime for some individuals. Victims who have severe injuries may have to relearn how to do basic activities such as walking, bathing, or dressing themselves. Some of them may also be physically scarred for life. These things should be calculated in settlements.
Another overlooked calculation is how long an individual was out of work. Insurance companies may not consider missed work or an individual no longer being able to work the same job. Some injury victims are medically classified as permanently disabled and never able to work again. This lifetime of loss of income should be part of settlement offers.
Consequences of Not Accepting Offer
If a victim refuses a settlement offer, the insurance company may make a higher offer or attempt to negotiate with them. Victims should use personal injury attorneys as a resource before they accept or negotiate an offer. Attorneys can perform valuations of a claim to determine if they are reasonable or fair. They can also negotiate settlement offers and provide insight into why the settlement offer is unfair. If there is still no agreement, a lawsuit can be filed.
Trial vs. Acceptance
Some victims get scared of going to trial for fear of losing. It is not uncommon for insurance companies to decide not to go forward with trials. An attorney can discuss the pros and cons of going to trial and whether accepting the most recent offer is best.
For more information, contact a personal injury attorney near you.Share
12 July 2023
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