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Low Offer, High Offer, or Court - Answers on Personal Injury Law

You may be at a crossroads in your life. If you or a loved one has suffered a serious injury, greatly affecting your life, you may wonder what your options are. You deserve compensation, but how do you get it? The initial steps in filing a personal injury claim is seeing if you truly have a case, finding out if the injury is severe enough for compensation, and then finding proper representation.

Who should you hire to help?
Are you a personal injury lawyer? If you aren't, you need representation. Not necessarily the family friend or the one who has a legal degree: you should hire an experienced lawyer who specializes in personal injury law. If you do that, you are in good hands. How do you choose one? It's not the end of the world to get the wrong one on the first try, but generally you want to consult with several, look over fees, and see who is willing to work at a fair rate. If you can get a lawyer who is willing to work on the “no win, no fee” philosophy, that is your best option.

What if you get a low offer?
You get a lawyer. That means you're serious. So what's next? Before this, you will have filed a claim with the insurer. If they rejected your claim for help, which does happen, getting a lawyer indeed shows you intend to seriously pursue this. You may then get some offers before you even file with the court. If liability is clear, the insurer will want to settle early. They may give you what you think is a high offer, but find it's not enough to cover expenses after medical costs, like lost wages. It's not uncommon to get a low offer to start, and to then get a better one. So make no decisions until you negotiate, as you can always go back to the initial offer.

What if you get a high offer?

What really is a high compensation offer? This all depends on the nature of your injury. The greater the value of the claim, the more important a lawyer is. You may, again, think an offer is rather high, and it may be, but the question may be why they are offering this. Insurers do not want to go to court. If you can settle before court, on the other hand, that saves you legal fees too.

Should you go to court?

You should go to court if your lawyer advises you to do so. Make no decisions alone. And don't be afraid to fight for more money; if the evidence is clearly on your side, you stand to get compensated for any physical and emotional problems, along with other points such as lost wages.

How much can you get?
Valuing a personal injury claim is never easy. You should factor in any expenses you incurred, such as medical and damages. You should factor in lost wages, no matter if you missed days or months. You should factor in your emotional trauma, any lasting effects you have, because this can greatly increase your compensation. The worse the injury, the more liability is clear, and the sooner you get representation, the higher the offer should be.