Should I consult an attorney before settling for the other driver's policy limit?

You were injured in an auto crash.  The injury was significant enough for you to miss some work and even required surgery.  The at-fault driver's insurance company has offered you “policy limits.”  You are wondering if you should just take the money or whether you need to talk to an attorney?  After all, why split this much-needed money with an attorney if it is the policy's limit – right?

SHOULD YOU CONSULT AN ATTORNEY BEFORE SETTLING FOR THE OTHER DRIVER'S POLICY LIMIT?

Should I consult an attorney before settling for the other driver's policy limit?Look, I am not one to tell a responsible adult what they should and should not do.  At the end of the day, it is your choice.  But, before you accept any offer from the at-fault driver, you should consider a few things: 

  1. Do you have actual, confirmed proof that the “’policy limit” offer is actually for policy limits?  What proof do you need?
  2. Did the at-fault driver have any other insurance that may be able to pay for your damages?  What other types of insurances may be available and how do you confirm it? 
  3. Was the at-fault driver working at the time of the accident – even if in their own car?  How do you even check this?
  4. Does the at-fault driver have any other assets that can pay for your damages aside and apart from the insurance?  Are you able to go after them if you agree to this “policy limit” offer?  How do you even investigate a person’s assets? 
  5. Will this “policy limit” settlement affect your ability to recover under your own under-insured motorist coverage?  Did you even know about that?  How do you make that claim?
  6. Is someone else potentially responsible for your damages in excess of the “policy limits?”  For example, what if both the driver and the actual car owner had separate insurance?  Can you recover under both?  How do you know? 
  7. What about your medical expenses?  How do you pay those if the “policy limits” are not enough to cover all the expenses?  Can you negotiate those expenses? 
  8. Why is this insurance company such in a hurry to pay you “policy limits?”  Insurance companies are not in the business of just giving money away – they like to make a nice profit to pay for their television ads.  What are you missing? 

BOTTOM LINE

You should make an informed decision about whether to accept the offer or not.  Your decision should only be made after you know all of the facts.  Make sure you have all of the facts.

If you have suffered disabling injuries in a car wreck and are being pressured to just accept the “policy limits,” call the disabling injury lawyer at Louisiana Disability Law to help you get all of the facts before just accepting.  Call today at (985) 240-9773.

Quick Guide to Louisiana Accident and Injury ClaimsI've written a book Quick Guide to Louisiana Accident and Injury Claims. This is a helpful and informative guide that will lead you through some of the common mistakes that can wreck your personal injury claim.  Discover why you may not even need an attorney! Get answers to your questions about recorded statements, paying medical bills, getting your vehicle repaired, negotiating a settlement, and much more! Don't make a costly mistake that could cause you to accept a settlement that is too small to cover your medical bills and lost wages! You need to read this before you talk to an attorney or insurance adjuster.  I'd love to send you a copy. Just click here to receive your free copy of my book Quick Guide to Louisiana Accident and Injury Claims.

 

Loyd J. Bourgeois
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Disability and Personal Injury Attorney