Car Accident

West Virginia Car Accident Settlement

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5 Questions That You Should Ask Before You Settle Your Accident Claim

Are you being offered a fair settlement?

No one can give you a perfect answer.  Each accident claim is different.  Determining a number for a fair settlement relies on a number of factors.  The questions below are just some of the most important ones you should consider when reviewing a settlement offer from an insurance company.  Take a look at the questions and see if you have the answer or if you need help finding the information you need.

  1. Does the settlement offer cover your medical expenses?

This should be one of the first questions you ask yourself.  It is important that you make sure that the money offered will pay for the treatment you have received up until now and any you will need in the future.  If you have a health insurance policy, you need to confirm what, if any, portion of your settlement they will want to collect.

  1. What other expenses does the settlement cover?

In settling a case, you need to consider a number of items above your medical bills.  You may have lost wages or lost vacation time that you cannot get back.  You may have a permanent injury that should be considered.  (If that is the case, I would recommend contacting a lawyer immediately.)  You also need to consider the pain and suffering that you endured as you recovered from the accident.  Keep in mind, the insurance company is not going to offer additional funds for any of this, you need to ask for it and provide some proof in many cases.

  1. Were you assigned any fault in the accident and if so how much?

Was the accident completely the other driver’s fault?  Did you have any responsibility in causing the accident?  An insurance company is going to take that into consideration when making an offer.  It will be their intention to place as much blame on you as they can to reduce the amount of money they will need to pay out.  You need to have that information up front before you sign any forms.  The amount of responsibility they assign you directly correlates with the number they offer and not in a good way.

  1. Does the settlement cover all repairs to your vehicle?

Has the insurance company made you a separate offer for your car?  Did you get offered a rental car?  Does the number cover all of the damage so your car is fully repaired or replaced?  These are important answers you need to make sure that you get your life back to normal.  An insurance company is paid to provide coverage for accidents, including the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle.  Do not allow them to skimp out and cut corners at your cost.  You may get bullied into accepting less than what your car is worth, it is your responsibility to ensure that does not happen.

  1. Are you overwhelmed and need help?

If you answer yes, then get the help you need.  Accident injuries are serious matters and you might need advice from a lawyer.  Most people assume they can handle insurance claims themselves, and in some cases they can.  However, it is important to determine when enough is enough.  Do not wait until after you settle to contact someone with the resources you need to ensure a fair settlement.  I have seen accident victims sign settlement agreements that do not come close to the amount of money they need to fully recover.  I have also helped hundred

You need to know what your claim is worth and what you should settle for.

I have seen hundreds of good people in our area get ripped off by insurance companies who have pushed a settlement that does not take into account a number of items.  If you need help reviewing your settlement before you sign the dotted line, check out our NEW Claim Settlement Calculator.

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Written by
Tim Miley
Tim Miley is the founder of The Miley Legal Group. After earning his undergraduate degree in finance at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX, Tim attended Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA, where he received his Juris Doctorate. Tim is admitted to practice in all courts in West Virginia and is currently a member of the American Association for Justice, the West Virginia American Association for Justice, the West Virginia Bar Association and the Harrison County Bar Association.
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