How long do you have to accept a settlement offer?

How long do you have to accept a settlement offer?

No specific deadline is required for individuals to meet when they receive a settlement offer on a personal injury claim. It is not always wise to respond immediately or refute a claim immediately. However, some settlement offers may include a date at which the offer expires, so you must consider this, among other factors, when reviewing a personal injury settlement.

To minimize the risk of delays and complications, it is best to speak to Lake Charles personal injury attorneys before you apply for a settlement. If you have already applied, contact us when you receive a settlement offer. Allow an attorney to review the offer, gain insight into potential gaps, and provide you with insight into how to respond.

how long do you have to accept a settlement offer

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How long do I have to accept a settlement offer after an accident?

Examine the settlement offer from the insurance company or at-fault party to locate an expiration date. Generally, this date means the insurance company may not guarantee it will pay the offered amount if you do not respond. It’s important to remember this does not mean they will not pay you any compensation.

When considering how long it takes to accept a settlement offer, read through the details carefully to look for any limitations that could impact your ability to file additional claims. You also need to consider:

  • The amount of compensation the insurance company pays
  • The timeline for when the insurance company will pay that compensation
  • Restrictions on what you can say or do after receiving the claim
  • Statements of guilt or limitations of admitting fault

Determine if the compensation offered to you is enough to meet your financial needs. This typically means looking further than just at your medical bills but considering all types of losses you suffered as a result of the accident. Your attorney can help you calculate an estimate that may include overlooked items.

If you do not believe the settlement is fair, it does not matter how long you have to accept a settlement. You should refute the claim at that point and renegotiate to get compensation more in line with your losses.

How will I know if a settlement is fair?

Pressuring you about how long you take to accept a settlement offer is often a way to force you into settling for less than what you are owed. The insurance company typically wants to close your case quickly and minimize what they pay. To do that, they may place an expiration date on the settlement offer, which is not necessarily final and does not mean the settlement is fair.

To determine if it is fair, work with your personal injury attorney, who can help you assess whether:

  • The coverage meets your economic and noneconomic losses
  • The settlement offer is enough to satisfy your ongoing needs if the condition or injury remains
  • The compensation provides you with money soon enough
  • The insurance company is asking to pay a structured settlement over months or years

If you deserve more than the settlement offer you received, do not simply settle. Remember that insurance companies want to pay the least they can get away with. Companies may try to do this by offering an initial lowball offer, making up reasons to deny or minimize their responsibility, or delaying the claims process.

What should I do if the insurer refuses to make a fair offer?

If an insurer refuses to make a fair offer, proceeding to trial might be your most effective option to secure adequate compensation. Here’s what you should do if the insurer refuses to make a fair offer:

  1. Review the offer and your claim – Review all aspects of your case, including the damages incurred, the cost of medical treatments, lost wages, and any other impacts resulting from the incident. Ensure that the offer from the insurer does not align with the damages you’ve suffered.
  2. Seek legal advice – If you haven’t already, consult with a personal injury lawyer who can provide professional guidance. An experienced attorney can evaluate the offer, negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf, and help determine if the insurer’s offer is truly unfair.
  3. Continue negotiations – Your attorney can continue negotiations with the insurance company with a detailed understanding of your legal rights and the specifics of your case. Sometimes, the involvement of a lawyer can prompt the insurer to revise their offer to avoid legal action.
  4. Prepare for litigation – If negotiations still do not result in a fair settlement, the next step is to prepare for litigation. Your lawyer will advise you on the viability of your case in court and begin the process of filing a lawsuit.
  5. File a lawsuit – Initiating a lawsuit involves formally submitting a complaint against the insurance company, outlining your case and how the insurer has failed to compensate adequately for your losses.
  6. Discovery and trial preparation – After filing the lawsuit, both parties enter the discovery phase, where each can obtain further evidence from the other side. During this phase, your lawyer will gather all necessary documentation, witness accounts, and expert testimonies to build a strong case for trial.
  7. Proceed toward trial – If your case moves towards trial, it will involve more detailed preparations, including strategy sessions with your legal team, pre-trial conferences, and jury selection.
  8. Trial – Both sides will present their arguments and evidence and call witnesses during the trial. After both sides have made their cases, the decision will lie with the judge or jury.

It’s crucial to have experienced legal representation like The Johnson Firm, which can significantly influence the outcome of your case. A skilled lawyer will guide you through every step of the process, ensuring your rights are protected and you have the best chance of receiving the compensation you need to recover.

Allow our attorneys to answer your questions before you settle

If you received a settlement offer, do not simply accept it. Instead, turn to our personal injury attorneys at The Johnson Firm to learn more about your right to additional compensation. We offer a free consultation to our clients to help them ensure they receive a fair settlement. You have time. Contact us for a free consultation by calling (337) 433-1414.

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