How to Get the Best New Jersey Injury Settlement
When you are pursuing compensation for injuries and damages you suffered due to a car accident, you are taking on an extended negotiation process with the insurance provider. You will find yourself bargaining with the insurance adjuster whose main job is to settle claims for as little cost to the company as possible. When your health and financial stability are at risk, you need every benefit possible as you face a professional negotiator. Here are some key tips to help make sure that you receive a fair settlement.
Know When to Hire a New Jersey Personal Injury Lawyer
Cases that may benefit from the involvement of a personal injury attorney in New Jersey usually fare best when that lawyer is brought on during the early stages. Before you start the negotiation process, consider the nature of your case and see if an attorney’s help would be of use to you. Unless it is a minor issue, such a case under $5,000, a lawyer may be able to do more for you. There have been many studies showing that net recoveries using the services of a lawyer, even after fees and other expenses, can far exceed what an unrepresented individual would settle for.
The value of your medical expenses and pain and suffering damages exceeds just a few thousand dollars. The higher the value that you are seeking, the more important it is to have a qualified New Jersey personal injury attorney on your case. Most insurance adjusters will take you seriously if you pursue a high-value claim with the help of a lawyer, making it much more difficult to obtain fair compensation.
Your claim will include compensation for future damages. Whenever needed, it is best to avoid entering into negotiations before you achieved your maximum possible medical recovery. If your project course of treatment will extend far into the future, or you need lasting injuries that will require ongoing treatment, your claim could include a demand for compensation for future medical expenses, future pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life, or lost income. It is advised to have the help of a lawyer to negotiate these issues because these items need specific proof before they can be recognized by the insurance company.
Fault is often disputed. In some crashes, the question of who is liable can be very clear-cut. In many other cases, however, the insurance adjuster will find ways to bring your claim into question. A qualified New Jersey personal injury attorney will know to react to these tactics because a skilled lawyer understands the law and who should be held responsible.
Know the Value of Your Claim
When calculating the value of your claim, start with an amount at the lower end of a reasonable range that will meet your needs and make the minimum offer you will accept. You will not reveal this to the insurance adjuster, but it will help in negotiation to know if you are able to accept a “final offer.” Prepare yourself to adjust this figure if need when new information becomes available. If the adjuster brings up facts that weaken your case — or if you find new evidence that strengthens it. It is difficult to raise this figure, but going down should be expected. If you are not good at negotiation, you should hire a qualified New Jersey personal injury lawyer to do it for you.
Do Not Accept the Initial Offer
Often, insurance adjusters will offer an unreasonably low figure to see if the injured party understands how much their claim is worth — or is desperate enough for any compensation that they will accept an unfair settlement. First, find out if the starting offer made is within a fair range or just a negotiation tactic. If it is fair, make a counter-offer slightly lower than your initial demand.
Emphasize Emotional Factors in Your Case
An insurance adjuster’s role is to settle a claim for less than they believe a jury would award. He or she understands that many factors could be potentially persuasive in court. If any of these factors are active in your case, you should use them to your advantage. This could include the use of alcohol by the driver liable in a car crash, graphic injury photos, or heavy vehicle damage.
It could be difficult when your injuries stop you from being able to work and the medical costs continue to pile up, but you should remain patient. Wait for a counter-offer before making another reply, and do not lower your offer a second time without any upward movement in the adjuster’s offer. Address all the adjuster’s objections and see whether a fair figure is coming. If not, you may need to consider pursuing a lawsuit.
Get It in Writing
If the insurance adjuster makes you an offer that you find fair and you are ready to accept it, you should first compose a letter confirming the agreed-upon figure in writing. Any verbal agreement is not worth much, and if the insurance company disputes the offer later, you will want to have proof of the offer you agreed to.
New Jersey Car Accidents
Car accidents are the leading contributor to death and serious injuries in the United States, with more people dying each year. Even in non-fatal crashes, the resulting injuries can be life-changing, causing victims to be saddled with expensive medical bills while being unable to return to work to cover the costs. Making sure you get the compensation that you need to make a full recovery after a serious New Jersey car accident is critical.
If injured victims think a reckless driver is responsible for their injuries, they should consult with a New Jersey auto accident lawyer immediately. Brady, Brady & Reilly, LLC has helped countless victims obtain fair settlements after being injured in a car accident. Contact our law offices today at (201) 997- 0030 to see how we can help.