A Comprehensive Guide to Making a Counteroffer in a Personal Injury Case
Suffering an injury is a daunting experience, and it is even more frustrating when the insurance company offers an inadequate compensation amount. Many people are often in a dilemma about how to proceed with the case and whether to accept the proposed settlement.
Fortunately, the law provides you with an opportunity to counteroffer the initial settlement offer. This comprehensive guide below will give you an insight into the whole process of making a counteroffer in a personal injury case. If you need qualified legal help with your personal injury claim, contact Hawkins Spizman Trial Lawyers. Our Dunwoody personal injury lawyers are ready to provide you with the guidance you need when making a counteroffer.
What Is a Counteroffer in Personal Injury Cases?
A counteroffer is a negotiation technique utilized in personal injury claims where the defendant presents a settlement offer to the plaintiff and the plaintiff makes a new offer. The counteroffer seeks to increase the initial compensation amount offered by the insurance company. Counteroffers help to provide fair compensation for the damages suffered, including medical bills and lost wages.
When Is a Counteroffer Made?
A counteroffer is made after the defendant or their insurance company provides an initial settlement offer. The plaintiff should take the time to consider the offer and evaluate its adequacy. If you feel that the provided settlement offer is inadequate or does not accurately represent the damages suffered, you can make a counteroffer. It is essential to note that the statute of limitations applies, implying that the plaintiff has a limited period to file the counteroffer.
Note: In Georgia, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit is two years from the date of the accident (Georgia Code § 9-3-33). It means that if your claim is not settled during the claims process, you must keep in mind that there is a two-year statute of limitations for filing a lawsuit.
How Do You Know When to Accept or Reject the Insurance Company’s Offer?
When deciding whether to accept or reject an insurance company’s offer, it is essential to consider a variety of factors. You should consider the magnitude of the damages suffered, the current compensation offer on the table, the costs of continuing with the case, and the possibility of winning at trial. If the insurance company’s initial settlement offer is fair, you may need to accept it. On the other hand, if the offer is low or unfair, you may choose to reject it and counteroffer.
How to Calculate the Counteroffer Amount?
When calculating the counteroffer amount, you need to consider several factors. These include ongoing medical bills, past and future lost wages, diminished earning capacity, property damages, and others. These calculations are subject to the personal injury case’s specifics, including the severity of injuries, the extent of medical treatment sought, and the total wage loss. It is crucial to consult with a skilled lawyer who can help you estimate a fair and accurate counteroffer amount.
What Happens Once You Make a Counteroffer?
After making a counteroffer, the insurance company will examine your offer and provide a response. There are three possible scenarios. The insurance company may accept your counteroffer, reject your counteroffer, or provide a counteroffer. If the insurance company accepts your counteroffer, then the case is settled. If the company rejects it, the negotiation continues. If the company presents a counteroffer, then the negotiating process continues.
Consult with a Lawyer Before Making a Counteroffer
Making a counteroffer is an essential part of personal injury cases, and understanding the entire process is vital. When making a counteroffer, make sure you consult with a personal injury lawyer to ensure the counteroffer represents your damages. Our lawyers at Hawkins Spizman Trial Lawyers can help you throughout the claims process. We handle personal injury cases in Dunwoody, Johns Creek, Atlanta, Alpharetta, Sandy Springs, and other parts of Fulton, Gwinnett, and Cobb Counties. Call 770-685-6400 to get a free case review.