Should I Agree to the Insurance Company's Settlement After a Truck Accident?
After a devastating truck accident, you may be understandably concerned about how you will pay your mounting medical bills. After the truck accident, the truck driver's insurance company may investigate your case and try to contact you. In some cases, insurance companies show up at the accident scene to immediately investigate to prove their driver did not cause the accident.
The insurance company may offer you a hasty settlement, hoping you will accept it in desperation because of your mounting medical bills. Unfortunately, the initial offer from an insurance company is almost always too low, providing victims were only a fraction of the full extent of damages they deserve.Calculate the Full Extent of Your Injuries
Before you sign a settlement agreement, you should discuss your case with an experienced North Carolina personal injury attorney. An experienced attorney will be able to listen to the facts of your case and give you an estimate as to whether your case has value. An attorney can also work with financial and medical experts to carefully determine the total current and future extent of your damages, especially your medical expenses. When assessing the total cost of your injuries from a truck accident, you need to think about multiple questions, including the following:
- Am I still missing time from work and losing future wages, bonuses, and other employment benefits?
- Did my injuries cause me to miss work and lose wages while I recovered?
- Have my injuries affected my family life and my personal life?
- Will I need to see disability benefits because of my ongoing medical conditions and injuries?
- Will a family member need to quit their job to care for me because of my injuries?
All of these factors and the expense of your initial emergency medical care and ongoing treatment need to be considered. Suppose you accept an offer that needs to be higher. In that case, you may not be covered for additional surgeries, rehabilitation, doctor's appointments, physical therapy, and more that you will need in the future.How to Proceed After a Truck Accident
Truck accidents can be some of the most complicated types of personal injury claims. If you were injured by an at-fault truck driver with a commercial driver's license, there is a good chance that the driver has an insurance policy. The insurance company will do everything in its power to avoid paying you the full and fair settlement offer you deserve. They may try to intimidate you and tell you that the accident was your fault. They may try to say you will not be able to get a better settlement offer elsewhere. Do not let them intimidate you.
Instead, you should reach out to your attorney as soon as you receive medical treatment. Your attorney will be able to level the playing field and start advocating for you immediately. The insurance company will likely begin investigating the accident quickly. Evidence could only disappear if you hire your own attorney slowly. Witnesses can forget what happened, and it may be harder for you to prove that the truck driver or another third party negligently caused the accident that resulted in your injuries.The First Offer is Usually Far Too Low
You should never accept a settlement from the insurance company or defendant without having your attorney carefully review all the details. When clients are represented by their own attorneys, they can often obtain a prior settlement amount. Their attorneys can negotiate aggressively with the insurance company to increase this settlement's value. Remember, global settlement offers will not cover the full extent of your financial burden. Even if you have not signed a release or deposited the check, the insurance company will try to hold you to any sort of agreement you made with them.
Make sure you do not unintentionally accept the settlement amount, even verbally. Instead, it would be best if you told the insurance adjuster that you will not decide until you speak to your own attorney. Have your attorney review the settlement offer. Usually, your attorney must negotiate with the insurance company for a higher settlement value.Discuss Your Settlement Offer with a Skilled Attorney
Have you been injured in a North Carolina truck accident? Has the insurance company offered you a settlement? If so, it is critical that you work with an experienced attorney who can review the Solomon offer and negotiate on your behalf. Contact Arnold & Smith, PLLC, today to schedule a free case evaluation.