If you’re going through the claims process after an auto accident, you might wonder exactly how your insurance adjuster arrives at the amount of money for your settlement offer. Here’s a quick overview of what they take into consideration.
Two big questions the adjuster has to consider are a) how much of a chance do you stand of winning if your case goes to trial, and b) how much would the jury award you if you won your case? The better chance you have of winning and the more money the jury would potentially award you, the more you’re likely to get in a settlement offer from your assigned adjuster.
The damages you stand to earn are divided into economic and noneconomic damages. Economic damages include medical bills and lost earnings, the kind with an exact calculation. Noneconomic damages, meanwhile, are damages not capable of an exact calculation, such as pain and suffering. The greater the medical damages, property damage and noneconomic damages you sustained, the higher the settlement offer is likely to be.
Placing the value on pain and suffering can be difficult, but insurance adjusters tend to have formulas they use to assign a value in such cases.
Keep in mind that the insurance adjuster works for the insurance company—their job is to give you a settlement value that is on the low end of reasonable. You are under no obligation to accept the first offer you get—you can work with your attorney to draft a counter offer you believe to be reasonable to improve your settlement value.
For more information about how settlement values are determined, contact an experienced Bradenton, FL auto accident attorney at Goldman, Babboni, Fernandez & Walsh.