After an individual has been involved in a collision or been the victim of some other incident where they have received personal injuries, it is normal for the injured person or his/her family to be contacted by an insurance company very soon afterwards. It is important to understand that these insurance representatives have adverse interests and are agents of a profit-motivated insurance company. It is common for the insurance adjusters to suggest that the injury victim not contact a lawyer and that people are better off dealing directly with the insurance company. This is all in an effort to try and get the injury victim to settle quickly for an inadequate amount. For the reasons stated below, it is strongly suggested that injury victims ignore any quick settlement offers or advice from adverse parties.
One of the primary reasons for not accepting a quick settlement offer is that a victim’s damages cannot be calculated immediately after an accident. Damages in a serious injury case include many different things such as medical bills paid and incurred, the cost of future care, lost wages, future economic loss from reduced earnings, as well as pain and suffering. The cost of future care and future economic loss are not something that can be quickly determined. Quite often it will be necessary to go through multiple medical procedures and evaluations before professionals can render a reasonable estimate as to the future cost of care. Also, a long-term prognosis will be necessary in order for an expert such as an economist to reasonably calculate future economic loss. Accepting a settlement without having necessary information can create a situation where a victim does not receive fair compensation.