You just saw your medical bill, submitted a personal injury claim to the insurance company because someone else caused your injuries, and now you finally have a settlement offer. You have probably heard stories of how insurance companies deny claims all the time, but your claim was accepted. However, this does not mean the settlement your insurance company offered you is fair. Before you can determine that, you will need to calculate the damages you suffered from the accident. A Tennessee auto accident lawyer may be able to help you if the settlement is not enough.
Insurance Company Motives
There is a reason behind almost every decision and insurance companies have many reasons for why they avoid offering fair settlements. The main reason is money. Each time a claims adjuster offers a settlement, no matter how small, the insurance company loses money. Insurance companies may be a service, but they are also a business. It is not good business to lose more money than you make, so supervisors often pressure claims adjuster to hold back on settlements.
Some insurance companies fire employees who refuse to deny claims and others commit fraud to avoid paying out compensation. The process of examining claims usually takes a one-size-fits-all approach. They treat every claim the same, regardless of the claimant’s age or unique situation.
When to Hire a Lawyer
After you have calculated how much money you need to cover any medical expenses or lost wages, you should compare this amount to the settlement you received. If the settlement amount is lower than what you calculated, then you can request a larger settlement by calling your claims adjuster. If you are denied, then you may want to contact a personal injury lawyer. Personal injury lawyers specialize in negotiating with and suing insurance companies for unfair treatment.
The Lawsuit Process
After you hire a personal injury lawyer, the first thing that will happen is your lawyer will ask for all the documentation you sent to your claims adjuster. This information will be used to demand a certain amount of compensation in court. The defendant’s lawyer and your lawyer will then negotiate an amount of money. A lawsuit may be filed if disagreement occurs.
Filing a lawsuit will take your case to court where there will be cross-examinations and witness testimonies. An alternative is mediation, in which a neutral mediator comes in and attempts a settlement. If a decision is still not reached, the case will be taken to trial. The judge will determine the amount of compensation you will receive.