Personal injury lawyers have perfected the skills required, for carrying out a successful round of negotiations. For that reason, smart claimants pay lawyers to represent them, during the pre-settlement negotiations.
The claimant’s first job:
As one of the lawyer’s clients, the claimant plays a part in creation of the demand letter. Following completion of that letter, the client/claimant should have a mental figure of his or her lowest acceptable offer.
Suggested actions for client-lawyer team, after receiving response to demand letter:
Study response, learn what weakness the adjuster found in the argument that had been presented in the demand letter. Take whatever steps are necessary, in order to address the identified weaknesses.
• The adjuster might allege that the purchased policy did not cover the reported accident.
• The adjuster’s allegations might relate to the issue of liability.
• Perhaps the adjuster has questioned reports about the extent of the victim’s injuries.
• Maybe the adjuster’s questions focused more on the nature and extent of the treatment provided to the victim.
• When sending corrections, include a new offer, one that is a bit lower than the original demand.
• Await the arrival of a new counteroffer.
How long does the negotiation process last?
That depends on how long it takes for the 2 sides to agree on terms of a settlement. The client-lawyer team must study each of the adjuster’s counteroffers. That team must decide whether or not it wants to accept the figure that was presented at the time of that bid, or to make another, slightly lower offer/demand.
The exchange of offers and counteroffers should continue until both sides have agreed to accept one specific figure. That figure would become the basis for the terms of a settlement.
Actions by client that can help an attorney
Taking notes when speaking on phone with the adjuster. Keep copies of all correspondence. After receiving any promise from adjuster, re-state promise in letter, and seek written confirmation of that same promise.
Be sure to follow that practice, after agreeing to settle with the insurance company. Ask for a date when the money for the payout should be ready. Combine your organization with a combination of persistence and patience. Demonstrate your patience by holding back on the release of any unkind comments, even if the claims process seems exceedingly slow.
Demonstrate your persistence by asking for written confirmation of any promises. Present your repeated requests in writing, so that your personal injury lawyer in Milton’s persistence does not become an annoyance. Cooperate with completion of the final steps—the placement of your signature on the insurance company’s release form. Still, be sure to review that same form in an attorney’s presence, before you agree to sign it.