If you have already been offered a settlement matter, many people may not feel the need to retain a personal injury attorney. However, there are several reasons you should still hire an attorney.
Calculating damages is legally complex, and the defendant’s insurance adjuster and/or attorney do not work for you. They also will not be working and calculating damages with your best interest in mind. Without legal guidance, you might settle your case for far less than you are entitled to receive.
The Insurance Company Does Not Represent You
Insurance adjusters understand the art of negotiations. Their job is to settle cases as quickly as possible and for the lowest amount possible. While the offer you receive may be enticing, you are most likely not receiving a fair offer. Moreover, clauses are likely included within the offer that prevent you from seeking additional damages.
To ensure you receive the compensation you deserve, you should retain a lawyer. Having someone at your side can help ensure you are well-compensated and can successfully negotiate your settlement.
Calculating Damages in a Personal Injury Claim
In a Florida personal injury case, you may be entitled to three types of damages—economic, noneconomic, and punitive.
Economic damages compensate you for the actual financial loss you incurred because of the injury. These damages typically include medical bills, prescription costs, physical therapy, damage to personal property, lost wages, and lost opportunity costs.
If you negotiate with an adjuster directly, this is most likely the only damages included in their settlement offer. Since these costs are easy to identify on a receipt, invoice, or pay-stub, many people feel that they represent the entirety of their damages, which is why you need a reliable attorney.
Non-economic damages exist to compensate you for the injuries you sustained that do not come with a price tag, like pain and suffering or loss of consortium. You can also receive punitive damages.
While the first two types of damages exist to compensate you for your losses, punitive damages exist both to punish the defendant and deter others from engaging in similar conduct. These damages are available when the defendant’s conduct was particularly dangerous or reckless.
Given the distinct types of damages available in a Florida personal injury claim and the difficulty involved in calculating those damages, it makes sense to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer before signing any settlement directly with an insurance adjuster.
Speak to One of Our Personal Injury Lawyers Today
The adjuster is looking out for themselves and the defendant. Our attorneys at the Watson Firm, PLLC will look out for you. Our legal team has substantial experience in representing Floridians in personal injury lawsuits and insurance claims. With us, your initial consultation is always free.
For help ensuring you receive all of the damages you deserve, you should reach out to us online or at (850) 607-2929. We will take the time to address the nature of your injury, the supporting facts of your claim, and all your questions.