Understanding Why Insurance Companies Offer a Low-ball Settlement for Your Claim

You are involved in an auto accident, sustain considerable injuries, and there's no question the other driver is at fault. However, when you file a claim with the other driver's insurance company, they send you an offer that barely covers your medical expenses. Why do the insurance companies believe they can get away with this? It can definitely feel like a slap in the face and is the reason why so many auto accident claims result in personal injury claims with an attorney. If you've ever wondered why insurance companies send out settlement offers that could almost be deemed insulting, here is a look at some common reasons this is the norm. 

The insurance company starts at the lowest settlement offer in hopes you will accept it. 

You may be willing to hold out for a better offer or even take the insurance company to court to get the compensation that you deserve after an auto accident. However, there is always a percentage of the population that will see a settlement and not want to hold out because they want the money right away. Because there is always a chance that you will accept the first settlement offer, that first offer is often much lower than it really should be. 

The insurance company is offering a settlement based on only some of your injuries. 

If you file a claim early, which you should do, and don't report additional injuries, doctor's visits, and other expenses to the insurance company, they will not include this information when considering your settlement offer. It is best not to accept a settlement too early after the claim has been filed for this reason, especially if your injuries will require ongoing care. Once that initial settlement has been accepted, you don't have a lot of room to further pursue the claim, if any at all.  

The insurance company is aware your claim is small and taking it to court seems unfeasible. 

If you have injuries, but your injuries are not incredibly major or long-term, it can seem like a waste of your time to contact an attorney and proceed with a claim against the insurance company. The insurance company is well aware that there are small cases like this that are less likely to result in a lawsuit, and they'll use this knowledge to their advantage. You may be getting a low-ball offer simply because the insurance company does not expect that you will press the matter further with such minimal damages. Regardless of how big or small your case may feel, having a personal injury attorney on your side will ensure you're treated as fairly as possible.