Understanding the injury accident settlement process before you ever have a need to file an injury accident claim for compensation is critical. By knowing the settlement process, you will know exactly how to handle yourself as soon as an accident happens so that you gather the right body of evidence and work with the right team of legal professionals for the best outcome. Every injury accident settlement process starts the moment the accident happens and will end when a check is issued to compensate you for all of your financial losses. The way that you act immediately following an accident can be influential in the processing of your injury accident claim. Here is some injury accident settlement and claim advice so that you take all of the right steps throughout the settlement process:
Step 1: Gathering Information At the Scene Needed to Settle Your Claim
The main purpose of carrying automobile insurance is to cover the medical expenses that can add up when you are deemed at-fault for a vehicle accident that results in injury. When you file a claim with your own insurance agent, you should have as much information as possible. This will benefit you while the claim is being investigated. If you collect the right information it can act as evidence and lead to a quick injury accident settlement. Some of the information you will need to collect and preserve before you file your accident claim includes:
- Photos of your vehicle and the scene of the accident
- A police report
- Witness statements from any witnesses who were not passengers in your vehicle
- Facts on how the accident happened
Step 2: Document Your Losses
Gathering your evidence does not end at the scene of the accident. You should document how the injuries that were sustained in the accident affected your life. Some of the documentation you should have following the accident includes:
- Medical records showing your injuries and how you were treated
- Bills for all medical treatment
- Documentation showing loss of work due to injuries
- Statement verifying loss of income and other financial losses incurred for care or child care
Step 3: Getting a Fair Settlement Offer
Insurance companies are for-profit entities and these entities are in business to offer the lowest possible amount of compensation. There are several different ways that insurers can evaluate how much to offer for an injury settlement, and the amount you are offered may depend upon the method the company uses.
Some companies will use a software program referred to as Colossus to assess the case and offer compensation recommendations. Other insurance companies will add up medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering valuations to come up with a fair settlement. In unique cases, the company may use a per diem calculation for your suffering following the accident. By hiring a personal injury attorney, you can ensure the most beneficial method is used in calculating your injury accident settlement.
If you know how to be prepared following an accident, filing a claim does not have to be difficult. If you want your settlement to cover all of the expenses you have incurred so that you can truly recoup, follow these steps and have the documentation you need to get back on your feet.