How Do Insurance Companies Determine Settlement Amounts?

When you get into a car accident or experience some other kind of injury, you may be in a hurry to get any amount of money you can from the insurance company. The bills are coming immediately, and the faster you can get them paid, the better. The problem is that accepting an insurance settlement early may mean getting less money in the end.

The unfortunate fact is that insurance companies are not completely on your side. They will compensate you if your policy requires them to do so, but they may do anything possible to limit your compensation or even deny your claim.

Insurance companies are businesses that are more in the business of making a profit than they are of helping people. Their profits go down every time they have to pay back a claim. You can click here to learn more about how insurance companies make money.

With a little caution and determination, however, you can come out on top. The claim-settlement process doesn’t have to be a nightmare. Keep reading to learn how to increase the chances that it’ll go smoothly.

Assessing Damages

After an automobile accident, the insurance company will estimate the damage done to your car and other expenses you have covered by your policy, and they will offer a settlement to cover those costs. However, their own adjustors will usually assess the damage, and they may end up offering you less than you think is fair.

Assessing damage can be subjective, and insurance companies will use that to their advantage. Another way they may limit your compensation is by offering you a settlement very early in the process. As tempting as that can be to accept, it would mean giving up your right to seek compensation for any costs that come up later.

It may take weeks or months after an accident before you know the full cost of the medical and vehicular damage that was caused by the crash. Accepting a settlement means agreeing that your claim has been resolved and that you won’t pursue more.

Disputing Settlements

That’s why it’s important to wait. If you’re not in a hurry to get your settlement, then the insurance company has one less source of leverage to use against you. Don’t accept a settlement for your accident-related costs unless you’re certain it’s the best option.

Don’t let the insurance company pressure you either. You can take your time in responding to their offers, and you don’t have to accept their damage assessments. You can challenge their evaluation and find someone else to assess the costs for you.

About No-Fault States

Some states require drivers to carry insurance that will cover the cost of their own injuries. These are known as “no-fault” laws. Texas is one of 12 no-fault states. The other states are:

  • Florida
  • Michigan
  • Kentucky
  • Minnesota
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Utah
  • Massachusetts
  • North Dakota
  • Pennsylvania
  • Hawaii

If you are injured in an accident in any of these states, you will cover your own damages rather than suing another person for your damages.

If you’re in a no-fault state, don’t settle for the cheapest insurance company. Instead, focus on making sure your policy will be enough to cover your expenses in the aftermath of a crash. You can visit this link to find out how much your expenses after a car accident may cost.

Getting Help

Before you decide to start challenging your insurance company, consider asking for help from someone with professional experience fighting claims like yours. A qualified attorney you can trust will be able to guide you effectively disputing your claim and pushing for the maximum settlement possible.

If you’re worried about being able to pay your bills while you wait for a final settlement, ask your lawyer what your options are. If you can delay payment long enough to negotiate, you will end up with a better deal.

Although insurance companies may not have your best interests in mind, hiring an attorney is always an option. Find a lawyer that will fight hard to get you your just compensation

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