Posted on: 12 February 2021Share
If an insurance company is ready to offer you a settlement, you might wonder whether you need personal injury representation. While it might seem like a great way to save money, there are several reasons why you might want to hire a personal injury attorney.
Checking the Insurer's Math
One of the simplest reasons for retaining counsel in this situation is to verify that the insurance company got their math right. While an insurer's claims adjuster has a duty to pay all legitimate cases, the adjuster is going to work from industry and company data to determine what sort of settlement to offer. That doesn't mean they're necessarily bargaining in bad faith, but it doesn't hurt to have a second set of numbers before deciding to accept or reject a deal.
Of particular interest is what's known as the multiplier. This usually ranges from 1.5 to 5 times the medical costs, and lawyers use it to calculate compensation for pain and suffering. Consequently, this often means the difference between recovering two or three times more money if an excessively low multiplier was used.
Avoiding a Rushed Process
The insurance company has its reasons for wanting to settle some claims rapidly. Largely, it's the insurer's benefit in these cases to wrap things up quickly to save on administrative and legal costs.
That doesn't mean it's to your benefit, though. If you haven't reached maximum physical recovery, it could leave you in a bad spot down the road. For example, someone who has suffered a back injury might only find out later that they have spinal damage. If they've settled, they won't be able to ask for additional money to cover the heightened medical bills that come with a more severe injury. A personal injury attorney will try to avoid settling before everything is known.
Much of the math of a personal injury claim centers on documenting everything in detail. That covers medical expenses, specific injuries, and lost wages. Missing one or two items can negatively impact a settlement offer significantly. It's best to have a professional comb through the details of a settlement to make sure everything is there. That means doctor's reports, statements from first responders, medical scans, and videos of the incident.
Checking the Agreement
Non-disclosure agreements and other stipulations are not unknown in injury cases. There's nothing wrong with accepting such terms, but a personal injury attorney should check the deal to verify that you've been appropriately compensated.
For more information, contact a personal injury attorney.