February 1, 2021 |
Car Accident Attorneys
, The Barnes Firm
Insured victims involved in an accident may find themselves receiving inadequate or no coverage from their insurance companies. One common expense—that often insurance companies pay below what would be considered just compensation—is for pain and suffering associated with an accident.
The lack of consensus regarding the quantification and monetary value of pain and suffering is a significant part of the problem, though insurance companies seeking to pay as little as possible is also an undeniable factor. Insured victims need to be ready to gather evidence and documentation, negotiate with their insurance company, and schedule a consultation with a personal injury attorney to ensure that they receive the most compensation possible.
There Is No Simple Formula to Calculating Pain and Suffering
Although insurance companies employ a variety of rules and formulas to determine dollar amounts for a variety of financial determinations – such as the initial cost and adjustments pertaining to insurance premiums – there are no concrete rules to calculate costs associated with pain and suffering.
Whereas insurance companies might have a proprietary algorithm, there are no consistent laws or regulations that govern how much – or how little – an insurance company can offer for pain and suffering. Insurance companies will consider multiple factors, such as medical bills, lost wages, damage to physical property, the extent of injuries caused by an accident or incident, and pre-existing conditions.
It is common for insurance companies to attempt to calculate the cost of non-tangible effects of an accident such as the pain of losing a loved one or psychological trauma resulting from an accident or incident. When an insured victim disagrees with the insurance company’s assessment, the insured victim has the legal right to challenge the insurance company in a court of law.
Insured Victims’ Rights and Suggested Actions
There are no laws that dictate that an accident victim has to accept the insurance company’s first offer. In fact, it is recommended that insured victims research their case and be prepared to negotiate with the insurance company.
Negotiating is encouraged because most insurance companies will purposely make a low first offer, hopping to stem their financial losses. An insured victim with sufficient evidence and documentation has at least a slight advantage over an insurance company.
Insurance companies risk losing far more money if they are challenged in court. Most personal injury attorneys that will represent an insured victim will work on a contingency basis, meaning that the insured victim will not pay any fees unless the lawyer can secure a settlement or get a favorable verdict and cash reward at trial.
The Barnes Firm excels at handling personal injury litigation for clients in New York and California. Our team of litigators handles a variety of personal injury cases including vehicular accidents, slip-and-fall accidents, and negligence in nursing homes. Our firm also prides itself on its community service, giving back to our communities through sponsorships and participation in charity events. Please feel free to contact us by filling out our online form or by calling one of our offices.