It's important to know what you deserve after a car accident. The at-fault driver owes you and you can be paid but having a personal injury lawyer to help you is vital. Read on to learn about the negotiation process and how to ask for what you deserve.
Ask for the Money
The other driver's insurance company may offer you a monetary settlement. Don't be shocked, though, when the amount is low. Letting the other side know what you expect is a step in the process that cannot be skipped. After all, they only know what they found out from speaking to their client and reviewing the accident report.
However, don't fall into the trap of speaking to the other driver's insurance company on the phone. You are not required to do that, and it could hurt your case in ways you cannot imagine. Talk to a personal injury lawyer and let them deal with the other driver's insurer. That way, only information that helps your case is communicated to the other side.
The right way to ask for what you want is through a demand letter. This letter lists your damages, such as medical expenses, lost wages, wrecked vehicles, and more. The letter also hints that you have plenty of evidence to back up the damages. Finally, though, the letter asks to be paid a specific amount of money. If the other side agrees, the case can be over, and everyone can get on with their lives. However, it may only be the beginning of settlement negotiations.
Add Pain and Suffering
An important part of the demand for compensation is the pain and suffering form of damage. Many accident victims are cheated out of this valuable form of damage because they may not know to ask for it. Pain and suffering, which is considered a single form of damage, is all about the general discomfort victims suffer after an accident. Here are a few examples of pain and suffering:
- Victims are unable to attend their grandchild's college graduation because of the accident.
- Victims are unable to drive because of post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD) connected to the accident.
- Victims become depressed about being unable to care for themselves for weeks because of a serious injury.
In many cases, pain and suffering is loosely based on the total dollar amount of their medical expenses.
Once you and the other side agree on a sum of money, you and your lawyer will sign a document releasing them from any further accident legal responsibilities. Speak to a law office such as the Law Office Of Timothy M. O'Donovan to find out more.