Reaching a settlement isn’t always easy. Make sure you click here to learn how to get the best personal injury settlement for your case.
Every year, more than 30 million people across the United States visit EDs due to personal injuries. These may take place at home, at work, or on the road. Getting a decent injury settlement can provide much-needed compensation for your injuries and you may well need it!
Every year loss of earnings and medical bills as a result of personal injuries total almost $671 billion. So a successful claim can really help to take the pressure off while you recover.
In that case, you need to know exactly what to do to ensure your settlement case is successful. Well, you’ve come to the right place!
Read on to find out what you need to do to get the best possible settlement for your personal injury case.
Have a Specific Injury Settlement Figure in Mind
Before you speak to an insurance adjuster about your claim, make sure you think about how much you want as a settlement. There are several things to consider when deciding on this figure, including:
- The extent of your injuries
- The trauma of the accident itself
- The cost of any medical bills you’ve accumulated
- The amount of time you have to take off work
- How much your injury has impacted your quality of life
- The emotional fall-out of your injuries for you and for those around you
You may also want to look at similar cases to yours in order to gauge how much you can claim for.
Once you have a figure in mind, use this to decide the absolute bottom-line figure that you’ll accept. You shouldn’t tell any of this information to the adjuster. But keeping it in the back of your mind will make sure that you get a good deal.
Don’t Rush to Reach a Settlement
Speaking of good deals, when negotiating your settlement don’t rush to accept the first offer you get.
Most adjusters will offer you a very low amount, to begin with. This is a common negotiating tactic to get you to reduce how much you’re asking for. It also means that the first figure they offer will seem unfairly low.
To show them that you’re serious about finding a middle ground, make a counteroffer that is a little lower than your initial one. This is why it’s always a good idea to start with a figure above your bottom line.
Eventually, you will find that the adjuster raises their offer and you can continue bargaining until you find a rate that you agree on.
Ask for Justification of a Low Offer
If an adjuster is standing by an offer that seems too low for you, asking them to explain this low offer can encourage them to change their mind.
This is a reasonable request from you and it forces them to outline their specific reasoning for trying to push a poor deal. In most circumstances, they won’t be able to provide a decent justification. When this happens, they will be forced to raise their offer to a more reasonable figure.
Put Emphasis on Your Emotional Points
In most settlement claims, there will be strong emotional arguments to support your claim. You should put emphasis on these.
For example, let’s say your injury makes looking after your children more challenging. You can emphasize that your children have suffered as a result of your injury. You can also make similar claims if you have elderly parents or relatives who you help care for.
Emotive images of your injuries can also help a case. This is because of what happens in a lawsuit settlement if you cannot come to an agreement with your adjuster.
When this happens, your claim will go to court. In that case, a judge will make a final decision about the settlement amount and emotive evidence will work in your favor. An adjuster will want to avoid this by settling out of court.
Engage an Attorney in the Lawsuit Settlement Process
Not every personal injury case requires an attorney or 5 star legal funding. However, there are some cases when this can be helpful.
If you want to make a large claim — around the $10,000 mark or higher — then having a lawyer on your side can help. This will automatically legitimize your claim more in the eyes of an adjuster. Your lawyer will also help you gather evidence for your case.
Hiring a lawyer is also a good idea if you need to claim for future damages as a result of your injuries. This is common in the case of long-term injuries.
Finally, if there are any questions as to who was at fault during your accident, you should get a lawyer on side. If any adjuster believes you’re at fault in an accident, they won’t pay out your settlement. When this happens, your lawyer will need to present your settlement and outline why you are not at fault.
Get a Copy of the Settlement in Writing
Throughout settlement negotiations, make sure you get everything from your adjuster in writing. On top of this, you should request a written agreement of the settlement once the amount has been agreed upon.
This will protect you if the adjuster tries to change their mind or pay you less in the future.
Get Help Reaching a Settlement for Your Personal Injury Case
As you can see, there are lots of things you can do to ensure that you get the best possible injury settlement. Keep these in mind and you won’t go wrong!
For more tips on how to look after yourself while recovering from a personal injury accident, check out our health blog.