If you are considering a settlement for your car accident injury, it may be wise to speak to a seasoned car wreck attorney first. They may be able to help manage your Tulsa car accident settlement expectations, and fight for your right to compensation before a case may have to go to trial. Call today and set up a consultation with a knowledgeable and dedicated legal professional.
The victim’s negligence affects the settlement amount. Oklahoma is a comparative negligence state, which means a plaintiff’s claim for damages can be reduced based on their own negligence. For example, if a jury awards $100,000 to the injured person but then they also find that the injured person was 50% negligent for the collision, that means that the award would be reduced by 50%. Therefore, the claimant would receive $50,000 in compensation instead of $100,000. If the jury puts 51% at fault on the injured party, then the plaintiff cannot recover damages because the jury has determined that they were more at fault than the party that caused the injuries.
When considering a settlement, the injured person should consider their expectations and risk. Attorneys often must control the plaintiff’s Tulsa car accident settlement expectations. A small collision that results in some bruising and maybe a sore neck is not going to be a case in which the plaintiff recovers $1 million. When the victim is considering a settlement, they must listen to the attorney and take their advice about what the case is worth and what it can settle for.
When considering a settlement, any injured party should consider the risks in denying whatever is being offered and taking it to trial, potentially getting less than what the settlement offer was, or even nothing at all.
The driving factor in the amount of time it is going to take to settle a case is how long the treatment will take for the plaintiff to recover from their injuries or reach maximum medical improvement. That can be a matter of months or in some cases, years. Although this time frame can be restricted by the statute of limitations in Oklahoma, which is two years from the date of the crash.
Before the statute of limitations expires, if treatment has not been completed, then the lawyer must file a lawsuit to preserve the claim. If they do not, then they lose all right to collect if they exceed the statute of limitations before the lawsuit is filed.
Once the medical treatment is completed, the settlement process can go quickly. The attorney will send a demand letter to the insurance company and start the negotiation process. Normally, that process does not take more than a few months. In that time, if they have not reached an agreement, they must look at the possibility of taking a suit to trial.
Some of the issues a person may encounter when negotiating a settlement are low offers. The insurance company may not agree with the attorney’s evaluation or what the plaintiff thinks is fair for the injuries received.
Some other issues are that the medical bills that are presented to the insurance company will be declined if either the bill is unreasonable or the treatment was unnecessary. They might argue that the person really was not hurt and that they did not need the medical treatment, therefore, deny the medical bills.
If you have been injured and an insurance company is offering a settlement, do not agree to anything until you have spoken with an attorney. A lawyer may be able to help you manage your Tulsa car accident settlement expectations or prepare for trial to get the compensation you deserve. Call today to schedule a consultation for your case.