If you get into a serious accident, particularly a motor vehicle accident, chances are you will hear shortly thereafter from an insurance company looking to get you to agree to a settlement. They will happily exert pressure on you to convince you to take a deal, with the goal of getting you to settle as quickly as possible. However, you should seriously consider putting off taking that settlement, and here are a few reasons why:
- You are not going to be in a good state of mind
- One of the biggest reasons not to take a settlement right away is that you are unlikely to be in a good state of mind right after an accident. It is likely that you will still be recovering from your injuries, and dealing with the mental health repercussions of your accident as well. This is far from the ideal mental state to negotiate a settlement, and that is what insurers will count on when they try to pressure you into settling.
- You have enough to deal with already
- In addition to dealing with the legal side of your accident, you will need to deal with medical care, handling issues with your work and family, file a claim with your insurer, and otherwise deal with a mountain of other problems. Insurers know this, and understand that some people will take a settlement just to get something off their plate. This almost never works to a victim’s best interests, however, with the insurer often getting away with a pittance compared to what they might have to pay later on.
- You probably do not have all of the evidence
- Even if an accident is fairly clear-cut with few issues to litigate, the fact of the matter is that you do not have all of the evidence about the accident in the first few days afterwards. In addition to conducting a proper investigation of the vehicle and the scene of the accident itself, there is also a need for medical reports and tests to determine the nature and extent of your injuries. Without this evidence, it is impossible to say exactly what might make for an appropriate settlement.
- You have not had a chance to negotiate
- In most lawsuits, the process of litigating a settlement is a complex one that can stretch over the course of months or years. Unsurprisingly, insurers would prefer not to go through this process with every accident, because it tends to make cases stretch out longer and increases the likelihood of a large payout. The sooner they can convince you to settle, the less it will cost them in the long run (and the less you are likely to get as a payout).
- You may have legal options you had not considered
- Personal injury lawsuits are often lengthy affairs, and for a good reason. People have many potential legal avenues to explore, which can take a long time to work through. However, the benefit of pursuing these additional legal avenues is that you may be able to get a better deal in the long run. If you settle too early, these options will be closed to you, and you will never know how much you might have been able to get for your settlement.
If you or a loved one have been injured due to someone else’s negligence, you should seek out the personal injury lawyers at Zlotolow & Associates. Our seasoned New York personal injury attorneys bring more than two decades of trial experience to your case. We serve all five boroughs of New York City, as well as Nassau and Suffolk County. Our aggressive personal injury attorneys always demand maximum compensation. We have helped thousands of clients recover through settlements and courtroom verdicts. To schedule a consultation, you can call us at 866-800-0092, or you can visit our contact page.