Calculating an Oklahoma City Car Accident Settlement
During a car accident case, an individual may need to choose between settling a lawsuit or going to trial. Without proper representation or experience in car accident cases, an individual may unwittingly accept a bad settlement deal which may not cover the cost of their injuries and damages. A knowledgeable attorney could assist you with settling an Oklahoma City car accident case. Contact a seasoned car wreck attorney today and get started on your case.
Determining the Settlement Amount
In a car accident case, the insurance adjusters will generally determine the amount of the settlement and make offers to the involved parties. The defense attorneys may have the amount for the settlement but would typically report to the adjuster, so negotiation could depend on the insurance company. For some insurance companies, the defense attorney would have what is referred to as an authority, or a threshold amount. For example, if an attorney has an authority of $25,000, then they may be able to begin negotiating on their own and begin at $12,000 and work their way up to settle for as little as possible. Some insurance companies require all the numbers to go through the adjuster on each negotiation in the settlement talks. Most of the time, the defendant’s insurance adjusters will negotiate the majority of the claims instead of the insurance defense attorneys.
The settlement amount could be calculated by taking the total settlement amount minus the fees and costs if an individual has an attorney and outstanding medical bills. If they had health insurance, then the health insurance may need to be reimbursed. Other factors include any other outstanding bills related to the wreck and the final payment to the person or the net to the plaintiff. A skilled attorney could help an injured individual with calculating an Oklahoma City car accident settlement.
Impact of Comparative Fault in a Settlement
Negligence on the behalf of the injured person could impact settlement amount. If the injured party or person was negligent, if they contributed to the wreck, an insurance company evaluates the case differently. The company could argue over what percentage the person is at fault, and might generally attempt to base the percentage of the fault on what a jury would likely do. However, insurance companies also have a large database on prior settlements, which means they may know what settlement numbers a large percentage of consumers are willing to settle for. If the injured party was ten percent at fault and the insurance company thinks it is worth $10,000, then they would reduce their initial evaluation of the claim by ten percent.
An Attorney’s Role in Calculating an Oklahoma City Car Accident Settlement
A seasoned car wreck attorney could help you determine the settlement value based on their experience. They have handled similar cases and could know what the typical settlement value is. An experienced car accident attorney could be willing to take cases to trial as they may have done so in the past. Lawyers that do not take cases to trial could be undervaluing those cases. Most insurance companies track which law firms go to trial, and they may evaluate the claim differently if the claimant and the attorney representing them are not willing to go to trial. Therefore, if you have been injured in a car collision, reach out to a dedicated lawyer who is capable of calculating an Oklahoma City car accident settlement.