Many accident victims want to settle their cases as soon as possible, which is understandable. However, you should be aware of the potential drawbacks of fast settlement. Below are some of these drawbacks.
You Might Not Get All the Evidence You Need
Your evidence collection is probably the biggest asset in your pursuit of fair compensation. Typical forms of injury evidence include:
- Medical records
- Eyewitness testimony
- Expert testimony
- Pictures and video footage of the accident, damage, and injuries
You need time to gather some of these things. For example, you may need time to track down and convince potential witnesses to testify on your behalf. Expert witnesses may also need time to evaluate physical evidence and formulate testimonies. Thus, you might lose some evidence and weaken your case if you conclude it too fast.
Your Settlement Might Not Account for Delayed Injuries
Secondly, some injuries do not show up immediately after an accident. One example is a concussion, a head injury that occurs when a blow to the head causes the brain to knock against the skull. Another example is whiplash, a neck injury resulting from a rapid back and forth head movement.
Delayed injuries might appear days, weeks, or even months after the accident. That means you might settle your claim before you understand the full extent of your injuries. Unfortunately, personal injury laws don't allow you to claim further compensation for the same accident after settling your case.
You Might Settle Before Reaching Your MMI
Even if you know your injuries after an accident, you might not know whether you will recover or how long your recovery might take. You might heal in a few weeks, months, or even years. Your injuries might even be permanent. You can only know these things once you reach maximum medical improvement (MMI).
Your MMI is the point at which your medical condition stabilizes, and your doctor doesn't expect further improvement regardless of treatment. You might settle your case before MMI and receive less compensation than you deserve if you settle your case in a hurry.
Fast Settlement Is a Poor Negotiation Tactic
Lastly, fast claim settlement is also a poor negotiation tactic. The settlement negotiation is a process where you start high, and the adjuster starts low. Most injury victims reach a settlement agreement after some back and forth with the adjuster. However, you might lack time to increase your settlement to a reasonable amount if you settle too fast.
For additional information about settling an injury case, contact an accident lawyer in your area such as Todd East Attorney at Law.Share