Negotiating with an insurance company after a car accident could be a time-consuming and worrying process for a victim that wants to move forward with their life after a car accident. While the negotiation process is not an event to look forward to, it is necessary to ensure that the victim secures the damages they deserve from a car insurance company. Before you accept the first offer from a car insurance company, you should consult with a Arlington, TX car accident lawyer today. The Queenan Law Firm, P.C., is here to explain why you should reconsider accepting the first offer from the car insurance company.
Reasons to Decline the First Offer from a Car Insurance Company in TX
When seeking compensation for a car accident, you should know the car insurance laws in the state operate. Texas is an at-fault state for car accidents. This means that when a negligent driver collides with you or your vehicle, the driver will be liable to you for injuries, property damage, and other related expenses. To help pay this off, the negligent driver would typically turn to their insurance company.
Minimum Insurance Policy Requirements in Texas
Every vehicle owner in Texas is required to have at least 30/60/25 coverage:
- $30,000 of coverage for injuries per person
- $60,000 per accident
- $25,000 for property damage
Insurance Company Will Undervalue the First Offer
When contacting the insurance company for the driver that caused the car accident, you should be prepared for a range of tactics the company may use to discredit your claim. The insurance claim adjuster you speak with will have a high interest in ensuring that their employer is not forced to pay a large amount of compensation to a victim.
One of the reasons to decline your first offer from a car insurance company is that the company will look to intentionally undervalue your damages. For example, the claims adjuster may ask certain questions in an attempt to get the victim to take responsibility for the accident.
There are other tactics that the insurance company may use to negatively affect your case. The insurance company may also perform the following acts:
- Fail to share vital information with the victim or their representative
- Take an excessive amount of time to process your case
- Use arbitrary reasons to deny your claim
All of these issues could affect whether you are provided with an offer that meets your needs. Additionally, if a driver does not have the minimum coverage or the accident was so destructive that their insurance policy cannot cover the damages, this would affect how much the victim could receive. This is why you should consult with a Plano, TX car accident attorney to discuss your options when negotiating an insurance payment.
Texas Modified Comparative Fault Rule
When dealing with car accident cases that are based on negligence, the level of fault of each party will be called into question. You will need to understand how the Texas modified comparative fault rule could affect the distribution of damages in your case.
The modified comparative fault law will not permit a plaintiff to recover compensation from another driver if they are overly responsible for the accident. Accurately, if a plaintiff is more than 50% liable for the crash, they would be unable to claim compensation for the crash. The percentage of fault simply has to exceed 50%, which means that even 50.1% is enough to bar recovery.
Factors that Affect an Offer from a Car Insurance Company
To make sure that you are awarded adequate compensation from a car insurance company, there are several factors that should be considered. These factors could increase the amount of money owed to a victim for serious injuries and property damage.
The Severity of the Victim’s Injuries
A victim could emerge from a car crash with bone fractures, head injuries, lacerations, and many other types of injuries. Upon having these injuries examined by a medical practitioner, the victim may find that they may need surgery or other expensive procedures to fully recover. As a result, the victim should thoroughly document their injuries to be used when making a counteroffer to a car insurance company.
Loss of Wages
If a victim was severely injured during a crash, they may have to take a few weeks or possibly months from work until they could properly perform their job. As the loss of wages would be caused by the negligent driver, this should be factored into the offer made by the insurance company.
As mentioned, the offer should also consider property damage suffered by the victim. If a victim’s car was totaled during the crash, this would likely substantially increase the damages owed to the victim.
There could be other factors that may be considered when a victim is seeking a viable offer from an insurance company. For instance, if your injuries have caused substantial pain and suffering, you should bring this up when bringing the case to your Houston car wreck attorney. We will do our best to ensure that your insurance offer is appropriate in comparison to your damages.
Call Us Before You Accept the First Offer from a Car Insurance Company in Texas
If you are concerned about settling with a car insurance company after a crash, contact our Fort Worth car accident attorneys today. As a whole, our qualified legal staff has wide-ranging experience with car accident cases, and we are interested in ensuring our clients receive adequate compensation after a collision. If you would like to schedule a free consultation, contact our firm by calling (817) 476-1797. See our website for scheduling options as well.