Settling a Lakewood Car Accident Case
Discussions of settling an auto accident claim typically begin when the injured party obtains all the necessary information of their accident and enters it into a demand package sent to the defendant’s insurance company. Following the presentation of a demand package, the insurance company is given 20 to 30 days to consider the various relevant factors involved in the accident. Then the attorney representing the injured party, or the plaintiff, would contact the defendant’s insurance company and begin the negotiation process.
The plaintiff’s attorney and the defendant’s claims adjuster will discuss each of the relevant factors involved in the accident and discuss what consideration should be given to each factor involved in the particular accident. After a thorough discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of each side’s claims, the parties will typically reach an agreement on settlement.
If you have suffered injuries from an auto accident and have been presented with a settlement option, reach out to a Lakewood attorney today. An attorney could thoroughly review a settlement amount before you choose to accept it. Schedule a consultation today to learn more.
Specific Information a Person Should Have for an Initial Consultation
During an initial consultation, victims should try to bring as much information about the other driver as possible. If they do not have a police report, then the attorney can obtain a police report for the injured party. Victims should also present information regarding whether they were taken from the scene by ambulance, information regarding the at-fault driver’s insurance coverage, the information exchange form that the injured party may have received at the time of the accident, and information regarding the medical treatment that they have received up to the point that they meet with the attorney.
Deciding Whether to Accept a Settlement
An injured party should consult with their attorney before choosing to go to trial rather than settling, based on an attorney’s years of experience with hundreds if not thousands of cases. An attorney can advise a client on whether the offer made by the insurance company is inadequate or whether the offer is fair.
For example, the value of a claim can depend on whether the plaintiff or injured party has contributory negligence, the property damage, the number of cars involved, the number of parties involved, and many other considerations. Every case is different and due to the multiplicity of factors involved in any particular case, only an experienced personal injury attorney can deliver the appropriate advice to an injured person.
Who Determines the Amount of a Settlement?
The amount of the settlement is determined through the consideration of various factors. Some of those factors include:
- Damage done to the vehicle
- Amount of medical treatment received by the claimant
- Frequency of medical treatment
In addition, specific circumstances of the accident could also dictate how much compensation is owed to the victim. For example, contributory negligence could potentially reduce the amount a victim is owed depending on the percentage for which they are at-fault. On the other hand, if the negligent party was also drunk at the time of the accident, the victim may be entitled to even more damages.
How Could Someone Benefit from Legal Assistance
The attorney, through experience of the various factors involved in a car accident, can advise you regarding which factors involved in a particular accident are important and relevant, and which factors are not important and not relevant. An attorney could also help the injured party obtain medical treatment and guide the claimant to avoid having any gaps in treatment. If you wish to benefit from the assistance of an experienced attorney, be sure to schedule a consultation today.