How do I know if the insurance settlement offered to me is fair?

Asked on March 13, 2015 under Accident Law, Indiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Total up your out-of-pocket costs or losses: items like cost to repair your car (or then-current fair market/blue book value if totalled); medical bills, if any; cost to rent a car while your car is in the shop; value of any personal property destroyed; towing costs; etc. Bearing in mind that you always take less than that total in a settlement (because you get the money faster and save the cost of suing; because if the other side doesn't get to pay less, they have no incentive to offer you a settlement), if you are being offered anything north of or more than 50% of your total losses or costs, then it's broadly speaking, "fair," since if you reject it, you'd have to sue to get more money. That's not to say you shouldn't negotiate and try to edge it up--but if you're getting the money fast and without the cost of a lawsuit, if it's more than 50% of your losses, it's in the ballpark.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.