Maximize Your Payout: 6 Tips on How to Increase Settlement Value
If you’ve been injured in an accident, we know you’re probably overwhelmed. Between doctor appointments, insurance paperwork, lost wages, and everything else, pursuing fair compensation can feel like the last thing you need right now.
But listen – you don’t have to handle this alone. With an experienced personal injury attorney on your side, getting the maximum settlement possible doesn’t have to be a long, difficult battle
Held, Held & Held, we’ve helped thousands of clients in New York get the money they deserve after accidents caused injuries and hardship through no fault of their own.
You’ve been through enough already – now let us handle the negotiations so you can focus on healing. Here are a few tips to help you maximize your settlement.
1. Seek Prompt Medical Attention After Any Accident
It may seem obvious, but it’s crucial: get checked out by a doctor as soon as possible after an accident, even for seemingly minor injuries.
This documents that the incident caused your injuries before any pre-existing conditions are alleged. Prompt medical records also establish the full extent of treatment needed.
In our experience, clients who go to urgent care or emergency rooms immediately have an easier time proving causality during personal injury claims. Delaying healthcare can falsely suggest you weren’t that injured initially or want to inflate damages down the road.
2. Document Everything Related to Your Accident and Injuries
In addition to medical records, collect as much documentation as you can about the accident circumstances and resulting effects:
- Take photos of the accident scene, vehicle damage, and any visible injuries. These establish details about how the accident occurred.
- Save all medical bills, prescriptions, and records related to your injuries. Have your doctor outline your treatment plan and recovery timeline.
- Track any lost income due to missing work, including details like used sick days.
- Log other accident-related costs like property damage, transportation to appointments, and more.
Thorough documentation shows the real impact of the accident on your life. According to New York statute, accident victims have up to three years from the injury date to pursue a personal injury claim.
3. Consult an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
Is relying on an insurance adjuster’s initial settlement offer enough for fair compensation? Rarely. Their first priority is protecting the company’s bottom line.
Partnering with an experienced attorney levels the playing field through objective claim valuation and forceful negotiation.
An attorney can use their experience to estimate the total value of your claim, including hard costs like medical bills and lost wages and less quantifiable factors like pain and suffering. They act as your advocate in settlement negotiations, fighting for full and fair compensation.
An attorney’s key roles include:
- Investigating the accident to establish liability and prove negligence.
- Gathering evidence like medical records, witness statements, and expert testimonies to support your claim.
- Calculating the full value of your losses – both economic and non-economic.
- Negotiating aggressively with insurance companies to demand fair compensation.
- Taking the case to court if a satisfactory settlement can’t be reached.
With extensive experience fighting for injury victims, a qualified attorney can maximize your compensation.
4. Understand How Settlement Value Is Determined
What factors determine what a personal injury claim is worth? Here’s what attorneys examine:
- The severity of your injuries and length of medical treatment
- Ongoing effects like lost income or limited mobility
- The at-fault party’s level of negligence and liability
- Non-economic costs related to physical and mental suffering
Insurance adjusters may make low initial offers. But, an experienced personal injury attorney can determine your claim’s full value based on these factors and data from comparable cases. Never accept an insurer’s first offer without exploring the full value of your claim.
5. Provide Evidence to Support Your Claim
Insurers look for proof your injuries resulted specifically from the accident. Some key types of evidence include:
- Medical records showing you sought treatment right after the accident for injuries consistent with the incident.
- Witness statements attesting the accident circumstances are as you described.
- Police reports confirming key details like property damage and who was at fault.
- Medical experts who can testify your injuries align with the accident circumstances and were not pre-existing.
Providing evidence like this demonstrates a clear cause and effect between the accident and your claimed injuries.
6. Be Ready to Negotiate
Once your attorney has estimated the full settlement value, they’ll negotiate firmly on your behalf. Be prepared to justify your claimed costs. Have written documentation of medical expenses, lost income, and other monetary costs. Explain future costs you may incur, like additional medical treatment.
For non-economic factors like emotional distress, give concrete examples of how your life has been affected. Your attorney’s role is to achieve full and fair compensation. They will typically negotiate back and forth with insurers instead of accepting an initial low offer.
Why You Should Choose Held, Held & Held to Help Maximize Your Settlement Value
Recovering from any personal injury is challenging enough. Navigating the legal process and fighting for maximum compensation should be the easy part, with the right personal injury lawyer on your side.
For decades, the attorneys at Held, Held & Held have been dedicated advocates for injured victims in New York. Our law firm has been recognized time and again for our legal skill, integrity, and results. Our clients appreciate having a personal legal assistant who knows the details of their case and is always available to talk.
Our team of tenacious, ethical attorneys has the experience to maximize your settlement. Don’t leave money on the table or struggle through this alone. Contact Held, Held & Held today for dedicated legal guidance that gets you the maximum compensation you deserve.