How Does a Car Insurance Company Calculate My Accident Settlement?
If you were involved in a car accident caused by someone else, you may be entitled to financial compensation to cover the damages you incurred as a result of the collision. But how does the insurance company put a value on your accident settlement and what can you do if their offer is too low? Here’s what you need to know.
Insurance Companies Use Computer Software to Calculate Your Claim
Many people assume that the job of an insurance adjuster is to assess all damages and calculate the value of a claim. This is true, however, it’s rarely if ever done with pen and paper, contrary to popular belief. Insurance companies actually use computer software that looks for data points in your claim and uses an automated algorithm to generate a settlement.
They Won’t Tell You How They Arrived at Your Settlement Total
Because the settlement offer total is generated automatically using analytics software, the insurance adjuster rarely knows exactly what goes into calculating your claim. They can run a report that itemizes the damages in your case, however, this is generally not information insurance companies are willing to offer up.
You can and should request an itemized assessment for your claim from your insurance company to evaluate how your settlement offer is broken down into individual damages for medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, etc.
You May Be Able to Negotiate for More If You Can Show Additional Damages
If you are able to show that you incurred additional damages above and beyond what the insurance company offered you, it may be possible to sue for a higher settlement.
For example, say the itemized breakdown of your claim shows that only $100,000 was allotted towards medical costs. However, your collective medical bills total $240,000. You can submit your billing statements to the insurance company to negotiate a higher settlement.
This is a fairly straightforward process in regards to economic damages, or damages that can easily be proven with a bill or statement. In terms of non-economic damages like pain and suffering, this can be more difficult to do and requires the assistance of a personal injury lawyer.
How a Personal Injury Attorney Can Help You
If you were injured in a car accident, don’t wait to get professional legal help. Contact California personal injury lawyer Carl Brown for a consultation to learn more about how to pursue the full and fair financial compensation you deserve for the damages you’ve suffered. Call now at (559) 431-4400.