Insurance companies handle car accident injury claims every day, but most accident victims have little or no experience with injury claims. Claims adjusters assess the damages to property and the injuries resulting from the accident. There are different levels of people in an insurance company who take part in deciding how much will be paid out for an accident injury claim. The insurance company must balance paying legitimate claims while not overpaying any claims and staying out of litigation. Litigation is expensive for insurance companies, even if they win, so the goal for the insurance company is to pay as little as possible but enough to satisfy the accident victim so he does not file a lawsuit.
Insurance Companies Settle Quickly
One thing an insurance company can do is try to pay quickly. A quick payment seems like a great thing to most accident victims and many will sign the settlement papers in exchange for a quick resolution. Insurance companies know that certain types of injuries can worsen over time. Injuries to the neck and back are common injuries which can worsen over time, or which can last for many months, maybe even years. Rather than wait for an accident victim to know that his injury may be more long-lasting than initially thought, an insurance company can offer a quick settlement and the accident victim must sign paperwork agreeing not to file suit again for any injury relating to that particular accident.
Insurance Companies Halt Payments
Another way insurance companies minimize payouts is to cut off medical payments after a certain amount of time. Most insurance companies have a set amount of time allowed for medical treatment for each type of injury. If an accident victim goes beyond the usual amount of treatment time, the insurance company sends a letter stating it will no longer be making payments for the treatment. If an accident victim fights the insurance company’s determination to stop treatment, the insurance company will usually schedule a medical exam to be conducted by a doctor hired by the insurance company. The doctor will review the records, the accident reports, and will examine the accident victim. The doctor may also serve as an expert if the case eventually ends up in litigation. The doctor will usually scrutinize the medical treatment and may decide that the treatment was no longer necessary, thus minimizing the ultimate payout because the treatment may be abruptly halted.
Getting Legal Help
An experienced personal injury attorney can review a settlement from an insurance company and discuss whether it is a good settlement for the injured victim. A personal injury attorney can also help gather necessary evidence or reports to put the injured party in the best possible place for negotiating with the insurance company.