Question: I just need advice on the value of my case. I want to keep the entire insurance settlement and don’t want to share any percentage with some attorney. I was injured as a passenger in a two-car accident and have some cuts and serious bruising on my face. How much can I expect to get from the insurance company as a settlement?
Robert’s Answer: There is no “cookie-cutter” way to evaluate a personal injury case. There are just way too many factors that some into play: Did you go the hospital? How much are your medical bills? Are there any hospital liens? Did health insurance pay any of the medical bills? Medicare? Medicaid? Is there any PIP or Med-Pay involved? How bad was the accident? Who was at fault in the accident: The other driver, your driver, or a combination of both? What jurisdiction did the accident happen in? Are you male or female, younger or older, married or single, employed or unemployed? Did you lose any time from school or work? Are you going to have any future medical expenses? Anypermanent scarring? And the list goes on and on….
The most important thing to remember is that when you handle a claim with an insurance company without proper legal representation, you are bringing a “knife to a gun-fight.” Insurance adjusters love dealing with unrepresented people because you bring no muscle to the bargaining table. Here’s a sobering fact: Did you know that insurance companies have a staff of adjusters that just handle unrepresented people and a totally separate staff that handles claimants who have attorneys? Think about why this is so?
If you are convinced that you will not retain an attorney, then the value of your case is whatever the claims adjuster says it is. This is because you have no effective way to fight back if you happen to disagree with their settlement offer (if they even make one). Good luck.