For most people who’ve had the misfortune of an accident or the like, insurance adjusters can be their best friend or their worst enemy. But most likely, it is more of the latter. In addition, in some cases, the insurance adjuster has also subsequently come to a settlement you are not satisfied with it. What can you do when this happens? Here are tips regarding proper insurance settlement negotiations, which spans the aftermath of the incident itself, up to reaching a settlement that you are happy with.
Note that you and your adjuster have a mutual interest in settling your claim promptly and fairly but you will both have different ideas of what’s fair. An insurance adjuster’s job is to settle claims for as little as possible and you’re only after what’s best for you. You want to be fairly compensated for your damages, and the adjuster wants to close out your claim as quickly and cheaply as possible
Also, insurance companies exist to make money and because of this, insurance settlement negotiations will most likely be needed. You can do your part by making sure that you’re being treated fairly.
Immediately after the incident, start preparing a settlement packet. Keep all of your papers organized in files, and use a notebook to write down general notes and summaries of your conversations with the adjuster. You should also keep and organize the following important documents:
- Medical bills
- Receipts for medications
- Proof of lost wages
- Car repair invoices
- Estimates for personal property damage
- Proof of miscellaneous expenses
After undergoing the necessary medical attention or treatment, mail your completed settlement packet, with your demand letter and copies of all documentation relating to your insurance adjuster. Don’t skip a thing and include everything relevant. After sending these important documents, patiently wait for a settlement.
Be informed, persistent, and committed to negotiating a settlement that’s fair for you. Be realistic when making your first demand. Ask for what’s fair, like for example, asking for three times the total of your medical bills, plus out-of-pocket expenses, and lost wages will be completely reasonable.
Lastly, finish negotiations as you began them. Be professional and committed. The result should be a settlement you’re happy with. In the end, you’ll realize that good settlements don’t just happen, they must be earned and you just did.