Here’s an ideal outcome from a car accident: you get your car easily repaired, your injuries quickly heal after a single doctor’s visit, and you get a timely settlement check from the insurance company to pay those bills.
That usually doesn’t happen. An appraiser may drag out a car damage estimate. And your doctor may need to see you more than you’d like. But a claims adjuster will call you soon and offer to send a check in the mail. At least someone involved in this accident is promising you immediate action, so why not accept it?
You Don’t Know How Injured You Are Yet
Picture a snapshot at the time of your accident. With car damage, you generally know the full damage done to your car. A bent frame and broken window won’t further deteriorate. The observable damage will be the same when the car gets to the garage.
Bodily injuries don’t work the same way, because your bones and tissue aren’t the same as metal and glass. In fact, immediately after an event like a car accident, you will be flush with adrenaline and endorphins. They suppress your pain so you may not feel very injured at all. Nevertheless, car accident victims develop injuries days or even weeks after the accident such as:
- Soft tissue damage
- Herniated discs
- Traumatic brain injuries
Each of these conditions are painful and will cause you future discomfort. They are also very expensive to treat. Any settlement check you accept should account for their present and future treatment.
Who Do You Trust to Calculate Your Pain and Suffering?
Car accident victims are not greedy people, but they are often made to feel that way when pain and suffering damages are raised. Pain and suffering don’t have a dollar value, so why are you entitled to more money in your settlement?
Even if all your bills are fully compensated, your life during those weeks or months was not the same as it was before the accident. Money doesn’t fix that, but something should account for that missed time. The real question to ask is, who do you trust to come up with that figure?
- Doing It Alone. Do you know how much pain and suffering is worth? Can you present a figure the insurance company will take seriously? Can you undervalue it by mistake?
- Trusting the Insurance Company? Will the claims adjuster deal fairly with an unrepresented injured victim? Is it an opportunity for the adjuster to save the company money?
- Getting Professional Help. A personal injury lawyer has experience with these calculations. A lawyer has a professional and ethical duty to represent your best interests. And because most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis, they are just as motivated as their clients to win the largest settlement possible.
Doing what’s right can be a tough decision. In your case, that means rejecting a quick offer and accepting a longer-term process that accounts for your full claim. Sam & Ash, LLP are the personal injury lawyers who want you to get What’s Right. A better settlement is possible and we offer an easier process for you to get it. You deserve to know your best course of action, so call us for a free evaluation at 1 (800) 304-2000.