Should I settle with the insurance adjuster instead of retaining an attorney?

settling-with-the-insurance-company-after-an-accidentAfter an accident caused by another party’s negligence, it may be tempting to resolve the matter by accepting the insurance adjuster’s first offer. However, this could prove to be a serious mistake.

Insurance Companies Are Motivated by Profit

Remember, insurance companies never have your well-being and future in mind. Their goal is to provide you with the least amount of money required to resolve the matter. The earlier in the process you’re offered a settlement, the less likely it is that the offer will be adequate for your needs.

Reaching Maximum Medical Improvement

Another reason why it’s dangerous to settle a claim too early is that you’re not allowed to ask for more money if your injuries turn out to be more serious than you first thought. You should never settle a claim until you’ve reached maximum medical improvement (MMI). This is the point at which you’ve either fully recovered from your injuries or your permanently disabling condition has stabilized to the greatest extent possible.

Calculating the Full Value of Your Settlement

The insurance company’s offer may seem decent at first glance, but after you take into account lost wages, medical bills, pain and suffering, its offer is likely far below the money you deserve. In cases involving serious permanent disabilities, the only way to accurately know the value of your claim is to consult experts who can calculate the anticipated cost of your future medical needs and the effect your disability will have on your earning captivity.

Protect Yourself by Consulting an Attorney

Although it’s true that the majority of personal injury claims are settled out of court, this doesn’t mean it’s wise to forgo legal representation. Consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to ensure you are fairly compensated for your accident-related expenses. Since cases are accepted on a contingency fee basis, there is no upfront cost associated with protecting your legal rights. Call today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with Hite and Stone’s South Carolina personal injury attorneys.