Practice Areas / Accidents
Auto Accident Attorney Omaha
We Answer your questions about the law
Your Auto Accident Settlement Offer Might Not Cover Your Expenses
According to the CDC, more than 6 million car crashes occur each year in the United States, with an average of 2 million injuries and 32,000 fatalities. Genuine accidents do happen, but a large percentage of crashes are caused by drunk drivers, distracted drivers, and outright negligence.
The National Safety Council estimates at least 1.6 million crashes are caused by drivers talking on cell phones and 200,000 are caused by drivers who are texting. Between injuries, fatalities, vehicle repairs, and property damage, the consequences of any auto accident are devastating.
Get legal help after your accident
If you’ve been involved in a car accident, handling the situation by yourself is overwhelming. The experience of being injured in a crash is stressful enough; you don’t need the added pressure of dealing with insurance companies that don’t have your best interests in mind. Delegating those burdensome tasks to an experienced auto accident attorney in Omaha will help you focus on your recovery.
How an auto accident attorney will help you
An auto accident attorney will help in two significant ways. First, they will deal with insurance companies for you. When you don’t know the law, you won’t get far with insurance companies by being persuasive. An experienced car accident attorney knows how to negotiate from a legal standpoint, rather than persuasion alone. They know the laws insurance adjusters are bound by, and are familiar with what’s considered fair compensation for comparable cases. And, a claims adjuster is less likely to be deceptive by omission when dealing with an attorney.
No matter how serious your injuries and property damage are, your insurance claim is not open-ended. Claims adjusters have a budget for settling each claim, and routinely start negotiations on the absolute lowest end. Never jump on the first offer you receive, even if it seems like a large sum of money. The first offer will almost never accurately represent what your claim is worth and it probably won’t be enough to cover your bills.
Insurance companies want to pay you as little as possible and you will have to fight hard just to negotiate an extra $1k. An auto accident attorney has the necessary experience to tell you whether you’re being offered a fair settlement or not. They’ll know if your claim is worth negotiating through the claims adjuster, or if you should file suit.
Don’t let insurance companies determine what your claim is worth
How much is your auto accident claim worth? That depends on the amount of property damage, the cost of your current and expected long-term medical bills, permanent injuries or disfigurement, lost pay, and all other expenses related to your recovery. It’s overwhelming to attempt to figure out if your settlement offer is fair while trying to heal physically and emotionally. You can’t rely on an insurance company to calculate a fair settlement. Their settlement offer won’t be based on your projected bills. And, although you’ll have the opportunity to negotiate, they’re not going to be easily swayed.
Even if you do manage to negotiate the highest amount possible for your claim, the money you receive might not be enough to cover all expenses. For instance, if your injuries require long-term care, you won’t know how long it will take to recover. Your medical bills and lost wages will continue to pile up with no end in sight.
When your settlement money runs out, that’s it. You can’t ask the insurance company for more, and once you accept a settlement you give up the right to sue. At that point, your expenses will come out of your pocket. If you can’t afford your medical bills, and you can’t pay your rent, you’ll have no choice but to go into debt. In that case, negotiating for a couple thousand dollars more will have been futile.
An auto accident attorney will know exactly when to bypass the insurance company and sue the responsible party directly. This eliminates the need to go back and forth with the insurance company. It doesn’t make sense to fight for fair compensation from claims adjusters who are instructed to pay as little money as possible.
Don’t accept an insurance settlement offer without consulting an attorney
Attempting to recover funds to pay for your medical bills after an auto accident in Omaha is daunting. You can’t expect an insurance company to offer you fair or full compensation without help from an attorney. Each year, thousands of legitimate insurance claims are denied for no apparent reason. Thousands more are considered, but the settlement offers aren’t enough to cover immediate medical bills, and many won’t cover long-term needs.
Insurance companies are for-profit corporations, and, like every business, they want to hang onto as much profit as possible. That means lowballing your settlement offers, hoping you’ll take whatever you can get. They’re counting on you to jump on a low offer out of desperation.
An experienced attorney can look at your case and tell you if you’re being offered a fair settlement. Chances are, you’re not. That’s why most people injured in auto accidents in Omaha hire a personal injury lawyer to help them get the compensation they deserve.
A high settlement won’t necessarily cover all of your expenses
Negotiating your claim without an attorney puts you in a vulnerable position. Many people make the mistake of accepting an offer they successfully negotiated because not accepting it feels like wasted effort. Negotiating a higher settlement might seem like a victory over a claims adjuster, but if the settlement amount isn’t fair, accepting the offer can impede your recovery. In some cases, negotiating with an insurance claims adjuster at all is not ideal. Experienced personal injury lawyers know how to make that call.
The best negotiation skills aren’t enough
Even if you’re a skilled negotiator, getting top dollar still might not be enough to cover your bills. Depending on your injuries, you might discover the need for long-term treatment that wasn’t calculated in the settlement offer. Or, you might qualify for compensation beyond your immediate injuries. For example, you’re entitled to more compensation if you were permanently disabled or disfigured in the accident. On your own, you may not know what you’re entitled to.
Negotiating with insurance companies is exhausting
It takes physical and emotional energy to negotiate with a claims adjuster. Going back and forth to squeeze out a few more dollars is going to frustrate and exhaust you to the detriment of your recovery. You might spend all of your energy fighting for an additional $2k, and still not be able to cover your long-term medical expenses or pay your bills while you’re out of work. You can avoid all of that by consulting an experienced auto accident attorney immediately.
A car accident lawyer will evaluate your claim to get you proper compensation
If you’ve been injured in an auto accident in Omaha, consult an attorney before accepting a settlement offer from an insurance company. Remember that once a settlement is accepted, you lose the right to sue. Settlement amounts can be deceiving; they often appear significant but many aren’t enough to cover expenses.
To receive fair compensation, contact a car accident attorney in Omaha to pursue the matter on your behalf. Don’t risk running out of funds. With severe injuries, unexpected medical bills and long-term care needs can arise after you’ve accepted an insurance settlement. A lawyer will fight for you to get the compensation you deserve from the start.