Negotiating an Injury Claim with an Insurance Provider
If you suffer an injury in a car accident and need to file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance provider, you can negotiate the settlement you receive. You’ll also want the assistance of a personal injury attorney to do so.
During the first call with your assigned insurance adjuster, you will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of your claim, with the adjuster likely giving you an initial offer. You may counter back and forth until you reach an amount to which you both agree.
The following are some tips for getting the best results out of your injury claim, working with your attorney:
- Always have a settlement amount in mind: This figure should be realistic based on tangible factors that influence the value of your claim. Based on that amount, you can come up with a minimum figure you would accept. Obviously, you will not share this figure with the adjuster, but it will help you gauge the quality of an offered settlement.
- Do not automatically take the first offer: Occasionally, the first offer might be a good one, but typically adjusters will offer you a lower figure hoping you will take it. Even if the offer is reasonable, you can make a counteroffer that is a little higher, but still lower than the amount you asked for in your demand letter.
- Ask the adjuster to justify low offers: If you get offers that are far lower than what you expected, ask the adjuster to explain. These justifications may or may not be legitimate, so it’s important to do some of your own research if you are unsatisfied with the offer you receive.
- Emphasize any points in your favor: For example, you should always stress if the other party was completely at fault or if the accident caused you any noteworthy trauma — physically or emotionally.
- Get it in writing: Once you’ve reached an agreement, be sure to get it in writing so you have clear documentation of it.
Negotiating a settlement with an insurer can be a complex and stressful experience. For the guidance and advocacy you need, work with an experienced personal injury attorney at Jakubowski, Robertson, Maffei, Goldsmith & Tartaglia, LLP.