No matter how small or big, road accidents cause significant inconvenience to all the parties involved, whether directly or indirectly. If there are serious injuries, the situation is compounded as physical and psychological trauma will take its toll. Add in medical expenses and loss of earnings, and the problem will snowball. Truck accidents are usually severe for the other person compared to the truck driver; however, it affects both parties equally on some levels. Since registered companies haul trucks, they can protect their employees through legal help. In most cases, the victim is offered an out-of-court settlement by the company’s insurance. However, you will get low offers if you don’t have an attorney or someone expert in dealing with insurance companies. In places like Stamford, insurance companies will easily take advantage of victims who don’t have a lawyer. It is best to take the help of a truck accident attorney in Stamford, CT, as they can make a difference in the outcome of your case. Before going to the attorney, you must know how insurance companies will try to make low offers to profit themselves and the trucking company.
What can be Settled?
Before discussing insurance companies and their tactics while dealing with truck accident cases, it’s important to know what can be settled in such cases. Following are the situations that are applicable for a fair settlement;
- Medical expense
- Loss of earnings
- Mental trauma
- Cost of recovery
- Damage to property
- Physical and emotional pain
Some damages are tangible and can be calculated easily; however, psychological issues arising from the unfortunate incident are incalculable, and this is where insurance companies will try to exploit victims. The following information will teach you to detect low offers and counter them.
You might think this is pretty straightforward; however, you will be surprised how easily insurance companies can manipulate the information for their benefit. You might have kept an immaculate record of the expenses from the day of the accident; however, insurance companies will find a way to lower the offer. They can argue about medications, treatments, consultations, tests, and other aspects. The best way to counter this issue is to calculate the amount of treatment yourself and then present evidence to the insurance agent; if they lower the offer significantly, don’t take it. Another way to avoid this is by contacting an expert attorney and letting them do all the negotiations.
Offer is too Quick
If the insurance company knows their client is at fault for the accident, they will try to settle quickly. Therefore, don’t be surprised if the insurance agent calls you within a couple of days after you have submitted the evidence. However, act wisely if such a thing does happen and question yourself, how come all the evidence was so quickly scrutinized? Usually, insurance companies will try to persuade the victim by saying an early settlement will help with medical expenses and compensate for lost wages. Unfortunately, many victims accept quick offers due to pain and suffering. Remember, initial medical expenses are always lower than subsequent recovery costs and medications.
Pressurized by the Insurance Company
If the insurance company is not letting up and forcing you to accept the settlement, it’s a good indicator that you are being manipulated into taking the low offer. Insurance companies are like all businesses; they will try to save each penny to boost their profits. If they don’t employ such tactics, insurance companies will always be running at a loss. Therefore, they will try to pressurize you into taking the first offer, which is always lower than the estimated amount. If such is the case, don’t fold under pressure and hire an attorney to oversee the whole situation.
Believe it or not, insurance companies have some of the best investigators. They will scrutinize all the evidence and information and try to find loopholes. They will do their best to blame you for the accident partially. As a result, you will be getting a lowball offer. You need to learn more about insurance companies to avoid being manipulated into taking partial blame and the low offer. If such a thing happens, relax and review all the evidence to ensure you were never at fault. This will help you deal with such dirty tactics from insurance companies.
Another way to judge lowball offers is by asking the insurance agents about the calculation methods. Hospital bills, medical expenses, medication costs, and property damage can all be calculated; however, intangible losses are not easily calculable. Any injury settlement case will involve emotional and mental trauma, and insurance companies will mostly try to lowball them. If the agent is hesitant to tell you the calculation methods of such damages, then don’t accept the offer. They might be generous to compensate for tangible losses, but they will rip you off on intangible ones.
Break in Communication
If the insurance company suddenly stops communicating after the first offer, it’s an excellent indicator that the initial amount was not fair. Most people don’t know this, but you can place a counteroffer, and the insurance companies will do their best to keep quiet on this issue. After all, they are trying to save some money, and if they allow the victim to negotiate, the amount might increase. Therefore, if the insurance company goes silent after the initial or your counteroffer, don’t break your communication and keep at them even if it frustrates the agent.
Truck accidents can cause a lot of damage to both direct and indirect parties. All of them are eligible for settlement and can take advice from an expert attorney. However, you must know insurance companies are not your friends or well-wishers; they are running a business and will do everything to save some extra cash. Therefore, contact an expert attorney right after the accident, so they can gather relevant evidence and make a strong case. They are also experts at negotiating with insurance companies. The above information will help you understand insurance companies and how you can prevent their dirty tactics for low offers against settlements.