Dealing with any court case can be stressful. There are a lot of hoops to jump through just to initially file your lawsuit. On top of the jumping, it may be emotional as well. The blows may not stop landing when it comes to the settlement. Below we will discuss why taking a settlement may be your best option.
How to Avoid a Lowball Offer
Experiencing an accident, injury, or another injustice is already burdensome. And if the other party comes back with a settlement amount that is lower than you expected, it can take an additional toll. Your lawyer should prepare you to expect the worst. This will take away some of the stress when the settlement is reached.
There are some tips to avoid getting a lower settlement. You’ll want to collect and complete all of your paperwork and documentation from the very beginning of the accident or injury. Every part of your experience should be considered when reaching a settlement amount. Make sure to express the struggles of not just the injury or accident – but medical expenses, lost wages from employment, and emotional damages. Your injury may seriously impact your ability to find future work as well.
Through the documentation, there will be a complete picture of the reimbursement you are looking for. Your paperwork isn’t complete until your doctor knows the full extent of your surgeries and treatments. There may be weeks of physical and emotional therapy. Depending on how well your body heals, you may not be able to return to work for an extended amount of time. Your injuries may be more serious than initially expected. Everyone’s body heals differently and you may run into complications. This should all be considered before your settlement request.
How to Respond to a Lowball Offer
Once you’re able to adjust your emotions to the lower settlement, you can dig right into the “whys”. There are some tried and true ways to respond to a low settlement offer. You have a right to know why they offered a lower settlement than requested. As long as you have laid out your claim cohesively, there shouldn’t be any reason they return with a lower settlement amount. However, many insurance companies may do this to see what they can get away with. This is because these folks work on behalf of the insurance company, not you. They don’t have YOUR best interests in mind.
Out-of-pocket damage is not the only damage that should be considered. Your lawyer will fight for you to be compensated for not only repairs, medical expenses, and lost wages. They will also fight for a settlement that covers future damages and expenses related to your injury. With a low offer, it’s easy to feel as if you are being taken advantage of. It’s vital to try and stay calm, collected, and civil through this process. Your lawyer will help you to establish what is best in this scenario. They will guide you through responding to the offer.
Your counter offer should never go below what you deserve for the damages you have experienced. It’s critical to establish the “lowest acceptable amount”. You can make several counter offers in between your highest requested amount and your lowest. Your attorney will help you respond in writing to the settlement. You will reiterate your expenses and why you deserve the payment you’re entitled to.
How to Receive the Best Amount
In addition to the steps we’ve discussed, there are a few other noteworthy tips. It’s crucial to remember that once you accept your settlement, it is final. There is no way of being able to go back to the claim in the future and request any more compensation. If your injuries cause complications in the future, you cannot request anything else from the insurance company related to this incident.
You should only accept your settlement offer when you fully heal. This ensures that the compensation received will cover all costs, out of pocket or otherwise. You control the settlement timing and your lawyer will remind you of this. It may be best to postpone settlement negotiations. This way, you have time to heal and gather the data you need.
The most important part of this agonizing process is to know what you are entitled to. An experienced attorney at your side can assist you through this. Keeping this in mind, you’re sure to receive what you deserve. There is justice at the end of this long road.