When you are involved in a car accident in which another party is at fault, you might be relieved if their insurance provider sends you a check. After all, you may have many medical bills that you are concerned that you will be unable to pay. However, whether you should accept and cash the check depends on how far along you are with your auto accident case.
When You Receive an Initial Settlement Check
An insurance provider will typically try to send a low-ball offer initially before sending a more substantial offer. If you receive a low-ball offer, it's important to not accept it because your case might then be considered settled.
Oftentimes, the offer you are sent will arrive before you even have an opportunity to receive medical care. Your claim might be worth much more than you think and you might be worried about the risk of missing out if you don't immediately accept. By consulting with a car accident lawyer, you are much more likely to know how much your claim will be worth and whether or not you should accept the settlement offer.
The upside of receiving a settlement check is that you will know how much the insurance provider wishes to settle for. Then, it will be much easier to make a stronger counter-offer. After calculating the damages you have suffered, you can mail a demand letter to the insurance provider. You will want this offer to be high but reasonable so you can have room to negotiate.
Why Your Settlement Needs to Wait
When you hire a car accident attorney, they will need time to gather the evidence necessary to prove that the other driver was responsible for your accident. The moment that the insurance provider finds out that you're working with a car accident lawyer, they are much more likely to take your claim seriously because they will know that you're informed about your rights.
While you might not want to file a lawsuit, in some cases, this is the best way to maximize the compensation you receive for your injuries. Also, you may receive a much better settlement offer shortly before your case goes to trial.
When You Receive a Settlement Check for an Agreed Upon Amount
After you have received all of your medical care, both you and your attorney may feel more comfortable with accepting a settlement. You are able to wait until right before the statute of limitations expires before agreeing to a settlement amount.