An average commute from work takes a sudden turn for the worse. Your car is damaged, and you’re injured. You call the police, exchange information with the other driver, and finally head home. When you call the insurance company, they make an offer that would cover some of your damages, but you fear it will not be enough.
Many people feel they cannot reject an offer from their insurance company to compensate for their injuries. However, there are several reasons why you should not take their first offer:
They are probably aiming low
It is essential to remember that insurance companies are businesses. Their goal is to make money. And the best way for them to do that is to settle your claim as quickly as they can, at the lowest cost. A fair settlement should cover:
- Out of pocket medical expenses
- Future medical costs
- Lost wages from time missed at work
- Compensation for pain and suffering
Insurance companies will often aim low with their first offer, betting on the fact that many people wish to just move on with their lives following an accident.
The first offer is rarely the last
An insurance company’s first offer is just the beginning of a negotiation. An initial settlement offer is seldom the best and final, and you are not obligated to take it.
You are free to negotiate
Those who have been injured in an accident have every right to provide the insurance company with a counter-offer. A personal injury attorney experienced in car accidents can help you construct a demand letter, a counter-offer, or file a lawsuit if necessary.