When should you accept a settlement offer from an insurance company after a car accident? You should never accept an offer before you know the value of your claim, otherwise you won’t know how much compensation you deserve. But, in order to calculate the value of your claim, you will need to know exactly how injured you are and how the injuries will affect you in the future. For this reason, it’s in your best interest to wait until you have reached maximum medical improvement before accepting a claim.
What is Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI)?
Maximum medical improvement (MMI) is the point at which a victim’s condition has improved as much as it is going to improve. For some victims, this means that they have fully recovered from their injuries. For instance, someone with a broken bone will reach MMI when the bone completely heals and the cast has been removed. But for others, MMI could mean that no further improvements are expected even though the victim is still experiencing symptoms. This can happen with many types of injuries, but it is especially common with brain and spinal cord injuries.
Why Should You Wait Until MMI?
If you don’t wait until MMI to calculate the value of your claim, it’s very possible that you will underestimate how much your claim is worth. If you have a brain injury, there’s no way of knowing what treatment you will need in the future, how long you will need to be treated, and how the symptoms will continue to affect your life until you have reached MMI. Even if a doctor predicts early on that you will make a full recovery, do not accept a settlement offer just yet. Remember, doctors can be wrong, and it’s very difficult to predict how someone will recover from traumatic injuries.
To illustrate why this is important, consider this example. A mild brain injury victim may be told in the early stages of treatment that he should fully recover within a matter of months. But after one year of treatment, the victim is still suffering both physically and emotionally even though he has reached MMI. If the victim had accepted a settlement in the early stages of his case, he may not have factored in the costs of future treatment and pain and suffering. Therefore, he would have ended up settling for an offer that is far less than what he deserves.
Once you accept an offer, there’s no way to go back and ask for more money from the insurance company, which is why it’s so important that you be patient and wait to reach MMI.
If you have been injured in a car accident, do not accept an offer without talking to a personal injury attorney. The team at Reisch Law Firm will help you calculate the value of your claim so you know how much compensation you deserve. Then, we’ll start fighting to recover the full amount for you. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.