Personal Injury Blog
A blog about Legal News, Laws, and Cases related to personal injury.
Would you settle for $100?
|Posted by Administrator (admin) on Dec 19 2012|
|Personal Injury Blog >>|
It's sitting on my desk. A check for $100. Written out to my client John* two weeks after he was knocked off of his motorcycle by a driver who wasn't watching where he was going. Before I represented John, the insurance company called him and asked how he was doing. "Okay, I guess. My knee's a little stiff." They offered to pay him $100 to settle his claim. Politely, he responds, "I would have to think about that." In his mind he was thinking more along the lines of, "Are you kidding me? What am I supposed to do with $100?"
John went to his doctor and was told that the swelling in his knee should have gone down by that point and referred him to an orthopedic specialist. Then John's friend suggested he should talk with an attorney. When I spoke with John, I encouraged him to see the specialist and find out what was going on before negotiating with the insurance company. After an MRI revealed that his knee had been "shredded" and that surgery was needed, we demanded the insurance company pay hundreds of times their initial offer to settle. And this week the insurance company paid in full.
How often are claims settled for $100, or $500, or even $1,000 before the injured, and unrepresented, person even knows the extent of their injuries? I am often reminded of Mr. Huph, the insurance company CEO in the Pixar movie The Incredibles when he is berating Mr. Incredible for paying on claims:
Mr. Huph: "I-- I-- I don't wanna know about their coverage, Bob! Don't tell me about their coverage! Tell me how you're keeping Insuricare in the black! Tell me how that's possible, with you writing checks to every Harry Hardluck and Sally Sobstory, THAT GIVES YOU A PHONE CALL! (storms out of Bob's office)"
Mr. Incredible, just like some adjusters I know, was trying to do the right thing. He saw people with injuries, not mere expenses. But people like Mr. Incredible are few and far between. So, the next time someone offers you $100 in exchange for your rights, give me a call. I'll review your claim for free and there's a good chance I'll be able to help you.
Last changed: Dec 19 2012 at 7:08 PM← Back
|When in doubt ...||By Guest on Dec 19 2012 at 9:25 PM|
|I think the key is that you referred him to get further evaluation. How would the guy know without an evaluation? A little mind-boggling that he didn't get things checked out first.|
|Cashing the check||By Guest on Mar 18 2013 at 11:30 AM|
|If a party offers $100 or $500 to settle a claim and they cash that check and then come after you for more money later they cant that check is a contract and them cashing it releases you from any further actions.|
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