Once the insurance company has finally made you a settlement offer, be prepared to say no. It is very rare for the first offer to be their best offer. When you go to purchase a car, you do not accept the first offer from the dealership. Similarly, the insurance company does not expect you to take their first offer, and that is why you can expect to initially receive a low ball offer.
April 24, 2013
SNAKE FARM INSURANCE COMPANY
1400 N. PROVIDENCE ROAD
ATTN: 0.J. Kildum,
RE: My Client: G. Howett Hurt
Your Insured: Scott Free
Your Claim No.: 0123456789000000
Dear Mr. Kildum:
Enclosed are the complete medica…
October 19, 2013
GOOD HANDS INSURANCE COMPANY
1400 N. PROVIDENCE ROAD
PHILADELPHIA, PA 19151
ATTN: N. SURANCE,
RE: My Client: A. Ken Head
Your Insured: Al Coholic
Claim No: 1234567890000000
Dear Ms. Surance.
Enclosed are the following medical bills and…
At the time you send the settlement demand letter, the insurance company is operating with incomplete information. You have selectively presented them with only the strongest aspects of your case. For example, if you were in an accident just a year before the accident case you are trying to currently settle, you might choose not to admit that fact in your settlement demand letter. You are not…
You can expect that, the first time you speak with the insurance company’s claims representative about settlement, there will be some kind of excuse for why a settlement offer cannot be made at that time. That is standard operating procedure. It does no good to get frustrated or angry. If the explanation is reasonable, handle it professionally and courteously. You will know if you are being…
Be sure to send organized copies of your medical bills and reports with your settlement demand letter. Arrange them in chronological order, beginning with the ambulance bill, the emergency room bill and report, the bills and reports of your primary physician, followed by the bills and reports of any specialist that you have seen. After this comes the physical therapy bills and reports, and then…
So you are probably asking yourself at this point how the lawyers and insurance adjusters figure your settlement limit. While the personal injury lawyer relies on his or her experience in similar cases, and on the opinion of other personal injury attorneys to gauge the maximum settlement value of a case, there are some tools available as well.
Holding Out for a Better Settlement
The willingness you and your attorney have for holding out for top dollar is another important factor. Insurance companies always start with a relatively low offer and work their way up. Your attorney is ethically required to report each and every offer to you. If your attorney is experienced, he or she will tell you if the first offer is too low and ask…
The Settlement Process
The vast majority of personal injury cases ultimately are resolved through settlement, rather than through trial. There are various stages at which personal injury cases are most likely to settle. Knowing this will enable you and your attorney to concentrate your settlement efforts around these opportunities.
The first chance for settlement occurs shortly after t…
Last month we discussed SEPTA’s use of video to ward off fraudulent claims. This month we’ll discuss a case in which the insurance company used a surveillance video and got itself caught in a violation of the wiretap law. Click here for more about that law.
This story begins with a simple car accident. First Keystone Risk insures the taxi that rear ended my client. About a mont…