After suffering a critical injury in an accident caused by someone else, it is natural to want to maximize your injury settlement. This settlement essentially represents your ability to move on after being out of work, pay your medical bills, and otherwise get on with your life.
Fortunately, there are several ways you can take action to increase the value of your personal injury settlement. Here’s where to start:
If you hope to maximize your injury settlement, you must receive medical attention immediately after your accident. Documenting your injuries is critical at this point, as it will show that the accident in question directly caused her injuries. If you wait, the defense can question how your injuries occurred.
Additionally, since sharing fault for your injuries can have an impact on the amount of compensation you are awarded under 735 ILCS 5/2-1116, the defense may argue that you contributed to the severity of your injuries. In doing so, they may be able to avoid having to pay out the full amount of your damages.
Insurance companies are notorious for making insultingly low initial offers. You are under no obligation to accept an insurance company’s offer. The insurance company makes low offers because they do not want to pay out the total value of your claim. Doing so would cost them money.
Do not accept an insurance company’s offer without discussing it with a lawyer if you want to get the most out of your claim. Instead, your personal injury attorney can negotiate on your behalf to ensure that you are not taken advantage of.
Another way to get the most out of your injury settlement is by retaining copies of your employment records. This could include statements from your employer that describe your hourly or salary rate, the number of hours you have worked, the amount of money you have missed out on by being unable to work, and copies of your pay stubs.
This way, you can recover the full amount of compensation you lost by being unable to work. Furthermore, this could help to show your entitlement to a loss of potential future earnings. This could include contributions to your retirement savings accounts, salary increases, bonuses, and more.
Unfortunately, one of the biggest mistakes people make is trusting the insurance company to help them. Insurance companies lose money by paying out on claims. It is in their best interest to do everything possible to reduce their payout.
They have teams of insurance adjusters working on claims to look for opportunities to deny or reduce the benefits they would otherwise be entitled to. Never trust that the insurance company will help you get the most out of your claim. Instead, have your attorney deal with the insurance company for you so your settlement is not at risk.
Maximizing your injury settlement also means considering the ways that your injuries may have an impact on your life in the future. Even seemingly minor injuries can have a tremendous effect on your life for years to come.
Your attorney will detail your physician statements to determine your prognosis and expected future medical care. This way, you can be compensated for this future loss in advance.
Insurance adjusters and the defense may comb through your social media accounts to look for inconsistencies and opportunities to suggest that you may have exaggerated the extent and impact of your injuries.
By staying off social media, not discussing the details of your accident or your Injuries online, and keeping a low profile after the accident, you can prevent the liable party from smearing your reputation.