In 20+ years handling personal injury cases, our Michigan personal injury lawyers have learned a thing or two about negotiating with insurance companies. Here is an overview of our approach to most cases:
Listen for clues
When settlement negotiations begin, we listen carefully for clues to what the settlement offer might be. For example, if the adjuster identifies alleged weaknesses in our case – say, pre-existing injuries, a penchant for litigation, or a criminal record – we expect the initial offer to be low.
Anticipate the next offer:
If the second offer increases only marginally, we interpret that as a sign the case isn’t likely to settle. In that instance, we seldom will waste time arguing with the conservative adjuster or trying to change his mind. Instead, look ahead. We try to be objective and consider the alleged weaknesses and see the case from the adjuster’s perspective. This helps us better determine how to proceed. Here are some questions we consider:
• Is the adjuster right? Are the weaknesses significant enough to hinder the case?
• How is a jury likely to view this case?
• Who will the insurer’s defense counsel be, and what is his/her reputation?
• Will the cost of taking this case to trial be worth it?
• Who is the judge, and will the judge support our client if the defense again comes in with a low offer?
Make an educated decision about how to proceed:
After weighing all factors, we make an educated decision about how far apart the adjuster’s position is from ours. If we are close, we will discuss with our client the possibility of accepting the settlement. If we are far apart, mediation might be a possibility. If the insurer does not want to mediate, a judge and jury is the only remaining option.
Contact the Michigan personal injury lawyers at Christopher Trainor & Associates
If you have questions or concerns about how to deal with the insurance adjuster in connection with your personal injury case, our experienced Michigan personal injury lawyers have answers. If you would like our council, please submit our online contact form or contact us directly by calling 1-800-961-8477.