Were you recently struck by a moving car? Perhaps it happened while walking on the side of the road or while crossing the street. Either way, pedestrian accidents can be painful, destructive, and expensive. You may have costly medical bills and may have to miss work while recovering from injuries. It's possible you may need care well into the future. After you file a claim with the driver's insurance company, they will likely offer you a settlement amount for your damages. This negotiation process is important because it directly impacts the amount of your settlement. Below are a few negotiation tips to maximize your settlement amount.
Reject the first offer. You may be tempted to accept the first offer the insurance company makes. After all, it could be a significant amount of money, and you may be desperate for cash. However, it's usually wise to reject the first offer. Remember, the insurance company aims to minimize the amount they pay. The first offer is usually intentionally low. They want to see if you'll accept it and take a low offer. Review their offer. If it's low, reply with a rejection letter. In the letter, clearly state why you feel the offer is low, provide supporting details, and counter with a more appropriate amount.
Get third-party documentation. Any documentation you can obtain that supports your argument will bolster your leverage in negotiation. That's why it's so important to call the police and see a doctor, even if you don't feel pain immediately. A police report will verify the accident details and establish the driver's fault. It's critical to have a police report. Otherwise, the negotiation could turn into a debate of your word versus the driver's word. Doctors' notes are also critical. They establish the existence of your injuries and the potential path for treatment and rehabilitation. Again, without a doctor's report, there's nothing to prove that you actually are injured. See a doctor as soon as possible.
Stay off social media. The insurance company's lawyers will do everything possible to show that you are not as injured as you claim to be. They will even scour your social media pages. This is not the time to post pictures of you on vacation or doing any physical activity. Even a picture of you standing could be used to show that you are not injured. It's wise to avoid social media altogether while you are negotiating your settlement. Any post or comment could be used against you in the process.
Ready to maximize your pedestrian accident compensation?
For more info, contact a local company like Lawson Law, P.C.