When you or a loved one is injured in a car accident, your first concern is physical recovery and getting excellent medical care. Being involved in an auto accident can be not only painful and traumatic, but it can also cost you lost income if you've been impaired physically and can no longer work. You may be wondering who is going to pay for your medical bills? What about lost wages from not working in the future and the emotional stress of the accident? These are all types of damages that you may be compensated for in a car accident personal injury claim and resulting settlement.
What Does a Legal “Settlement” Mean?
Once you’ve filed your initial claim, settling your case basically means resolving your dispute and not going to trial. Many car accident cases don’t end up in a full civil trial; most often, these cases end up settling as the parties come to an agreement that is palatable for all involved. What are the pros and cons of a car accident settlement?
Is the Settlement Offer Acceptable?
First, consider several factors in thinking about the settlement offer. Is this the first offer? Insurance companies take advantage of what you don’t know, and if they can lead you to believe accepting their first offer is the right thing to do, they know you can’t come back and ask for more.
It’s important to consider your future damages and make sure you understand the full scope of your injuries. If you have severe injuries, the settlement offer should include compensation for any future needs, such as future medical care, future pain and suffering, and more. One of the main reasons why it is important to avoid accepting a settlement offer early on, especially when the offer appears low, is because you need to know the full scope of your damages. This means calculating all the losses you have experienced as a result of your injuries. If you are still seeking medical treatment, for example, you may require procedures or longer treatment in order to recover. If you accept a low offer too early and still need treatment, you are on the hook for it.
Pros and Cons of Accepting a Car Accident Settlement
Once the offer meets your needs, one advantage of settling in a car accident case is that it often saves money for the victim and leads to a swifter resolution than if the case went to trial. Additionally, settlement negotiations are kept confidential, and neither party has to admit fault. Having the opinion of a third neutral party, such as a mediator, can also help lead to a result that everyone can agree with.
However, there are some disadvantages to settling a car accident case. First, once a settlement is approved by the court, the victim can no longer pursue a lawsuit with regard to the accident, including going to trial based on the same incident. In addition, it is possible that the amount of compensation settled on would be less than what the victim would have received if they were successful at a trial. Moreover, since settlements are kept private, no one will be held publicly accountable for their actions.
Car Accident Settlement Attorney
Pursuing a legal claim for a car accident may seem like a daunting task and something you want to avoid. We encourage you, however, to consider allowing our team of attorneys at Brandon J Broderick, Attorney at Law, to help you through the process. Without a legal claim, the insurance company can offer you a lowball offer that barely covers any of your needs and may even refuse to cover some of the damages. You may be left having to pay for the costs of your injuries on your own. Contact us today and let us turn your setback into a comeback.