What Happens If I Reject a Settlement Offer From the Insurance Company?
What Happens if I Reject a Settlement Offer?
So, the insurance company made you a settlement offer on your car accident case, but it’s not enough to cover your costs. What happens if you reject their offer?
We outline the answer to this question and more—keep reading to learn more.
Why Reject the Insurance Company’s First Settlement Offer
The insurance company’s goal is to save money. One of the ways they accomplish this is by offering people who filed an insurance claim a settlement that’s far less than they deserve. If you were hurt in an accident, filed an insurance claim, and received a settlement offer that is too low to cover the cost of your medical care, medical bills, and other related expenses, your math isn’t bad; the insurance adjuster is likely trying to manipulate you into a low-ball offer.
Unfortunately, this is a fairly common occurrence. Rejecting their initial settlement offer is the first step in getting the compensation you need and deserve.
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How to Reject the Insurance Company’s First Settlement Offer (and What to Do Next)
The first settlement offer is just that—an offer. If you’ve decided to reject the insurance company’s first offer, it doesn’t mean you are no longer eligible to claim compensation. Telling the insurance company “no” is simply part of the negotiations process. If you want to reject a settlement offer, you should submit a letter that outlines your refusal; it’s in your best interests to draft this with the help of a skilled attorney.
Negotiations can be a stressful process, so we always recommend securing legal representation and working with a personal injury attorney who can handle the negotiations process on your behalf.
Respond With a Counteroffer
A counteroffer is your response to the insurance company and your demand for what you believe is fair compensation. It outlines the details of your claim, related costs, and the impact it had on your life. Based on that information, the counteroffer will include the settlement amount that you and your lawyer have determined is fair.
To calculate the true value of your case, your attorney will consider:
- Medical expenses: Hospital bills, medication costs, medical bills, ambulance rides, emergency medical treatment, ongoing services, such as physical therapy, and any other related costs.
- Lost income: Standard wages, overtime pay, bonuses, and any other income you may have missed out on.
- Household services you need because of your injury: Cleaning services, lawn services, in-home care, and other costs.
- Emotional injuries: Pain and suffering, anxiety developed as a result of the accident or injury, and any related emotional impact.
- Any future expenses: This usually covers long-term treatment, renovations to your home, assistive devices, and any other ongoing costs related to your injury.
Once complete, your lawyer will deliver the letter to the insurance company. They’ll then respond to your counteroffer. In fact, it’s not unusual to have several back-and-forth communications before coming to an agreement. This agreement is called a “settlement.”
If you can’t come to a fair settlement, your attorney may suggest you take your case to trial. Going to trial is fairly rare for most personal injury cases, but when the insurance company refuses to cooperate, it may be in your best interest.
Why Is it Important to Work With an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney?
Injured people who work with an attorney tend to receive higher settlements than those who represent themselves.
Why? The insurance company works with injured people every day. They know how to manipulate people into accepting low settlements. They may try to use high-pressure tactics, like short timelines and strong language, to push you to accept their first offer. They may push even harder if they know you have a strong case that could be taken to court.
It can be extremely difficult to stand up to these tactics, especially when you’re unfamiliar with the process and are trying to focus on your recovery. Plus, if you do accept an offer that’s too low, you won’t be able to ask for more compensation later—the case is closed. Working with an experienced personal injury attorney helps you avoid mistakes and give you the time and space to focus on your healing.
The Team at Myers Law Firm Is Ready to Help You Navigate the Insurance Claims Process
The insurance claims process is notoriously complex and stressful. Our law firm has been standing up for injured people in Charlotte, North Carolina for decades. We know how to handle the insurance company’s tricks and are ready to stand by you to get a fair settlement. To learn more about your options, the value of your case, and whether you should turn down the company’s first offer, call (888) 376-2889 or complete this brief form. We’ll meet with you in a free consultation so you can make the best choice for your future.
The content provided here is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.