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Is the insurance company making a fair offer?

Missed days from work, doctor appointments and physical therapy appointments could be taking up a great deal of your time if you suffered injuries in an accident. Police cited the other driver for being at-fault in the accident, so you called that driver's insurance company to file a claim. You may have also filed a claim with your own insurance company just in case the other driver does not have enough coverage for your losses.

You may have even received an offer from the other driver's insurance company faster than you thought you would. However, when you saw the amount, your exuberance waned quickly. Insurance companies are notorious for making low offers. They are in the business of making money and don't want to pay out any more than absolutely necessary. The important thing to remember is that you are not obligated to take that first offer.

Take a good look at what the offer is first

It's possible that the insurance adjuster assigned to your claim did not have all relevant information before making the offer. The adjuster may not yet know that the other driver was at fault or may think that you contributed to the crash somehow. In either case, you still may not be satisfied with the offer. Before you attempt any further communications with the insurance company, you may want to discuss the situation, including the offer, with a Florida attorney.

A phone call won't cut it

If you intend to turn down the first offer, you may want to do it in writing. You may be able to request additional information regarding the adjuster's reasoning for the offer while also providing additional information that the adjuster didn't have before. You may also use this opportunity to discuss the other damages you incurred in the aftermath of the accident such as time off work, pain and suffering, and mental anguish.

You may also include a counteroffer in your written communication for an amount that you find more acceptable. This could end the matter or begin further negotiations with the insurance company.

You may need to file a lawsuit

If the insurance company fails to be responsive or to take your claim seriously, you may need to file a personal injury lawsuit. It may still be possible to reach an acceptable settlement prior to going to court, but at least the company will know that you take the matter seriously and want a fair settlement.

There are risks with filing a lawsuit, so it may be beneficial to take your concerns, questions and desires to an attorney. You deserve to know what your rights are after an accident, what compensation you can receive and what steps you can take to receive it.  

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