Dealing with the aftermath of a car accident can be a stressful situation. In many cases, drivers get involved with insurance companies to get claims paid on time. If you’re wondering how to negotiate an insurance settlement for your car, it’s important to know what information the insurance company needs and how to increase your chances of a successful outcome.
negotiating the value of the car with an insurer after an accident
When you are involved in a car accident that causes significant damage to your vehicle, the next step is to seek compensation from the insurance company providing the car policy. however, getting a fair price for damages is often a challenge, as an insurance company loses money when it has to pay out after an accident.
According to value penguin, claims adjusters who work for insurance companies try to pay the least amount possible for the damage that occurred to your vehicle. Before you accept the first offer you receive from an insurance company, keep in mind that you can negotiate to get what you deserve. The first step in the negotiation process is to find out the true value of your vehicle. A claims adjuster will determine how much your vehicle will cost to repair, but knowing its value can help you in your negotiation.
The two main types of claims in this situation are first party and third party, and the type depends on who is at fault for the accident. if you are using first party benefits, you will be dealing with your own insurance provider. Third party benefits come from the insurance company that insured the other driver in the accident.
tips for negotiating with an insurance company
As you prepare for your negotiation with the insurance company, it is helpful to follow a few tips. the first is to avoid accepting the first offer made to you. according to nolo, sutliff & stout and findlaw.com, an insurance adjuster will often make an extremely low first offer to determine if they know how to negotiate or understand the value of your car. Even if the offer seems reasonable at first glance, you should always negotiate.
after researching your car’s value, get a number you think is fair for a deal. It must be the absolute minimum that you are willing to accept. keep this number in mind, but don’t reveal it to the adjuster, as it could affect what they offer you. Your minimum settlement amount should serve as the bottom line when you feel the pressure that comes with trading.
Since this number will stay in your mind, you don’t have to hold on to it. During the negotiation process, the adjuster may point out information that alters the value of your car or how you view the situation. In addition, if an adjuster’s first offer is close to his minimum amount, he may want to consider increasing that amount.
after deciding on a minimum amount, you must also calculate what you think is a fair settlement for damages. When calculating your fair settlement amount, be sure to consider:
- any suffering and pain caused by the accident.
- the cost of any required medical care and other related expenses.
- if your injuries prevented you from working and you lost income.
- the cost to repair or replace your vehicle.
- the cost to repair any property damaged during the accident.
- whether you will need long-term medical care or be permanently disabled.
- describe the car accident in detail.
- describe any injuries you sustained as a result, as well as any medical treatment required for the injuries and ongoing health problems.
- describe the extent of the damage done to your vehicle.
- discuss any other loss or damage that occurred as a result of the accident.
- the agreed settlement amount.
- the date you expect to receive additional documentation or the settlement amount.
- what damages and/or injuries are covered by the settlement.
Based on this information, determine the value of all aspects and propose a minimum settlement amount. If you are having trouble calculating a reasonable and fair settlement amount, consider consulting with a personal injury or car accident attorney.
Now that you have a minimum settlement amount based on your calculations, the next step is to send a demand letter to the insurance company. in this letter, you must:
Next, the letter should include the settlement amount you are requesting, although it should be between 25% and 100% higher than your minimum, since the insurance company will most likely offer you less than what you are asking for. demands. Be sure to include any documentation or evidence that supports the claims made in your demand letter. failure to provide evidence may result in an offer that is lower than it deserves.
If the insurance company responds to your demand letter with a reasonable offer, it may respond with less than the amount you demanded. By doing so, you can show the adjuster your willingness to compromise. Continuing to go back and forth through the negotiation process should bring you to an amount that you both agree is reasonable and fair.
After reaching an agreement with the insurance adjuster, make sure you receive the agreed amount in writing. You can write a letter to the adjuster with the negotiated amount. When writing this type of letter, keep it simple and include only a few key pieces of information:
negotiate a personal injury settlement without an attorney
alllaw.com advises that it is certainly possible to handle a personal injury claim without hiring an attorney. however, it is important to know what the negotiation process is and what you are getting into by taking it on yourself. when it is clear who is at fault and the injuries are minor, it is usually more profitable to handle negotiations on your own. most personal injury attorneys keep a third of the settlement amount, so it has to be a high amount to make it worth hiring an attorney.
If you’re negotiating a settlement, use these tips to increase your chances of a successful outcome.