Should You Accept the Insurance Company’s Settlement Offer After a Crash?
At Cofman Townsley, we spend a lot of time warning car accident victims that insurance companies might deny their claims. But sometimes, insurance companies offer victims settlements just weeks or even days after crashes occur. However, this isn’t always a good thing, and in fact, it’s a tactic that insurers often use to avoid paying even bigger settlements.
It’s important to understand that insurance companies exist to make money—not to protect their policyholders or the people they hurt. Their teams of adjusters have one primary objective: find ways to reduce or deny claims. They have many ways of doing this, and one of them includes offering fast settlements to victims who need money right away.
Why is getting a quick and easy settlement from the insurance company a bad thing? Here’s what you need to know.
Offering Fast Settlements Can Help Insurance Companies Save Money
Insurance companies don’t go into auto accident claims blindly. They do research to determine how much money a potential claimant might receive if they file a claim or lawsuit. And when a victim is seriously injured in an accident and wasn’t at fault in any way, they often know they can’t deny them compensation.
In this situation, they try to minimize the damage and the amount of money they’ll have to pay by offering a fast and upfront settlement. They know that many victims are in shock and may already have mounting medical bills and no paychecks for the foreseeable future. By offering an immediate settlement, they can avoid paying victims the full amount of money they deserve for their accident-related damages.
When Victims Accept Settlements, They Can’t Ask for More Money Later On
When a victim accepts a fast settlement offer, they not only aren’t getting the full amount of money they’re owed, but they also forfeit their rights to future compensation. Buried in the fine print of settlement offers is the agreement that victims accept the money as-is and that their claim is fully paid and the case is closed.
However, victims are rarely able to fully calculate or anticipate how much their injuries will cost them. They know they need money to cover the paychecks they’ve lost and the medical bills they’ve received, but they aren’t thinking about the fact that they may need ongoing treatment for years or that their careers are in jeopardy because of their disabilities.
Our Lawyers Can Review Your Offer and Work to Get You Fair Payment
In rare cases, insurance companies actually do offer fair settlements to victims with no strings attached. But you should never take them at their word or trust that their offer will be enough to cover your crash-related expenses, and you should always have legal counsel to help you make the right decision.
Having a lawyer on your side right away after your crash accomplishes three things. First, it helps you understand how much your claim is worth, including current and future medical bills and lost wages. Second, it helps you understand all of the fine print in the insurance company’s offer. And finally, it provides a layer of protection between you and the insurance company’s profit-focused tactics.
Contact Us Today for a Free Consultation
Never accept a settlement offer without speaking to a lawyer first. And know that at Cofman Townsley, we’ll never charge you for simply speaking to us about your case. In fact, you’ll never see a single bill from us unless we win your claim, which may include demanding far more compensation from the insurance company than they’re offering you.
Our St. Louis car accident lawyers are ready to start helping you get the money you’re owed. Contact us today for a free consultation. We have the experience and track record of success you need to get the outcome your family deserves.