The North Carolina DMV reported 114,722 injuries from car crashes in 2021. Experiencing an accident is unsettling. In the aftermath, dealing with insurance companies is a necessary step, but it can also be a daunting one.
It is common for an insurance company to quickly make a settlement offer, but should you accept this first offer?
Understanding the purpose of the initial offer
Insurance companies are businesses looking to keep their expenses as low as possible. The initial offer an insurance company makes is usually calculated to close the claim quickly and at the lowest possible cost to them. Unfortunately, this might not fully cover your expenses. Take the time to evaluate all costs, including medical bills, vehicle repairs and any long-term expenses related to injuries. If injuries from the accident require ongoing treatment or result in lost wages from being unable to work, these should factor in.
Negotiating for a fair settlement
Remember, it is not required to accept the first offer from the insurance company. It is a starting point for negotiations. If the first offer does not adequately cover the costs incurred from the accident, it may be appropriate to counter with a higher amount. Have all relevant documents, like medical bills and repair estimates, ready to support your counteroffer.
Do not feel rushed into accepting the first offer from the insurance company. While the first offer might seem like a quick way to resolve the situation, the goal should always be to reach a resolution that is in your best interest.