Personal Injury FAQ
At Haxel Law in Springfield, we always take time to answer questions about pursuing a personal injury claim. Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions:
Should I Talk To The Insurance Adjuster?
You do not have to give the insurance adjuster anything more than the most basic information: Your name, address and so on. Anything you say to the insurance adjuster may be used against you. Any misstatement you give, anything you say that may minimize the severity of your injury, could be used as a reason to diminish your claim. You may be better off having a skilled attorney speak with the insurance adjuster on your behalf.
What If I Am Offered A Settlement?
Settlement offers are common in personal injury claims, particularly auto wreck cases. You may be surprised at how soon you get one. They key is knowing how much your case is worth and not accepting a settlement that is any amount less than that. If you accept a small settlement and learn you need more money to cover your medical expenses and other costs, you will not be able to go back to the insurance company to ask for more money.
How Much Is My Claim Worth?
Determining the value of a claim is one of the most complex aspects of personal injury cases. While the exact dollar value cannot be pinpointed without a thorough evaluation of your case, you should be aware that you are entitled to compensation for medical bills and lost wages, both those you have already accrued and those that may come in the future as a result of your injury.
It is easy to forget to factor in the cost of future doctor appointments, physical therapy sessions and surgeries, but they should not be overlooked. If you are not able to return to your job and have to take a lesser paying job, the difference should be accounted for in your compensation. Furthermore, you are entitled to compensation for pain and suffering, which is difficult to calculate, as it is considered a noneconomic damage. When you work with a lawyer, your lawyer will take care to ascertain a fair value for your claim.
How Long Will It Take To Resolve My Claim?
You need compensation now. Medical bills are piling up. You are missing work, and there are other bills to pay as well. Do not let this urgency allow you to accept less compensation than you deserve. An attorney who is familiar with these matters can offer you guidance. The reality is that personal injury cases take time. In some cases, particularly those involving severe injuries, it is worth waiting to make certain that the extent of the injury is fully understood before resolving a case, in order to ensure that enough compensation is obtained to cover the full cost of treating the injury. An attorney who has handled these cases and is familiar with insurance companies can find the fastest path to a resolution.
Will My Case Go To Trial?
Most personal injury claims are resolved by negotiating a settlement. With that being said, it is valuable to have an advocate on your side who is well-versed in trial. If the need arises because an insurance company is unwilling to offer a fair amount, your lawyer should be able to take the next step and argue your case in front of a jury.