Once you have been injured in a truck wreck, you have one goal in mind. As quickly as you can, you want to go back to the way life was prior to the accident—to the extent that is possible. For many truck crash victims, this leads to questions about settling their claims. Here, we will provide answers to three important questions that our truck accident injury lawyers often hear from clients and perspective clients.
I. How Do Truck Accident Settlements Happen?
Truck accident settlements are negotiated between the victim and the insurance company for the party that caused the crash. It is important for you to take control of the process as early as possible so you can be sure that your right to a fair recovery is protected. You can do this by:
- Contacting an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. An attorney can make sure that all of your rights are protected and that you don’t make any mistakes that could negatively impact your fair recovery.
- Letting any insurance adjuster or attorney who contacts you know that you are represented by counsel. Once they know you have hired an attorney, all communications should be directed to your lawyer and not to you.
- Allowing your lawyer to investigate what happened and to gather evidence. This may take some time. However, it is a really important step. It allows your lawyer to learn both about the accident and your injuries so that your lawyer can accurately assess the value of your case and determine the amount of a reasonable settlement.
- Having your lawyer send a demand letter to the insurance company. Your lawyer can initiate official settlement talks by sending a demand letter to the insurance company that explains exactly how you have been hurt and the value of your damages.
- Having your lawyer respond to any answers to the demand letter and engage in negotiations with the insurance company. The insurance company is unlikely to write a check based on your demand letter. Instead, they may ask for more information or make a counteroffer. Your attorney will respond to the insurance company and continue negotiating for your fair settlement.
In many cases, this process will work and you will be able to settle your claim. However, you should not be afraid to go to trial if the insurance company is unwilling to settle your claim fairly.
II. When Should I Settle My Truck Accident Claim?
There is no magic time when it is right to settle all truck crash claims. For example, we can’t tell you that after six months of negotiations, it is time to settle your truck crash claim and that at that point you will have received the insurance company’s best and final offer.
However, we can tell you that it may be time to settle your truck crash claim if:
- An experienced lawyer who is not afraid to go to trial to protect your rights has looked over the settlement and advised you that it is fair compensation for your injuries.
- You have thoroughly reviewed the settlement offer yourself, you understand what is included and what is excluded from the offer, and you are comfortable with the settlement amount.
- The settlement includes compensation for any future losses, such as medical costs or lost income, that are related to your truck accident injury.
This type of settlement may happen within weeks of making a claim if the evidence is overwhelming and the insurance company is convinced that you will fight for your rights. It may come after months of skilled negotiation by your lawyer, or it may never come at all and you may need to go to trial to protect your right to a fair recovery.
III. What Happens After I Settle My Truck Accident Case?
Once you agree to a truck accident settlement, a check will go to your lawyer. Any costs and fees will be deducted from your settlement amount and then you will receive the rest of the money.
The terms of your settlement agreement will prohibit you from seeking and recovering additional damages in the future. Thus, it is important to make sure that any truck accident settlement you agree to is fair and compensates you for both your past and future damages.
To learn more about the settlement process or your fair truck accident injury recovery, please contact our experienced truck accident injury lawyers for a free, no-obligation consultation.