So, you’ve done the work, you’ve been treated for your injuries and your property damage, and now your question is, “how do I close my claim? What’s the process for me to get a settlement and close my case? There’s a lot of different things to be careful of when you settle on your claim.
First, remember that once you settle your claim, the insurance company will not pay for any more medical bills. If you’re still injured at all, do not close your claim. We have people call us all the time and say their back or neck still hurts but they closed their claim six months ago. Seriously, if you close your claim, your case is over. There is literally nothing more we can do.
Another important thing you need to keep in mind is your statute of limitations. This is a law that says you either have to settle your claim or file a lawsuit before a specific date. If you do not do anything in that allotted time, the case is over. In the state of Washington, that is three years from the date of the accident. In Oregon, it’s two years. So, make sure you are aware of your statute of limitations.
Typically, the insurance company is going to get all of your medical records. They will call all the doctors you went to. They collect all those medical records, review them, and then they’re going to make you an offer. That initial offer is almost always low. Unfortunately, a lot of people accept that offer. Now, our job is to negotiate with the insurance company and get that settlement offer even higher. If you’re going to do this on your own, we strongly recommend that you do not accept the first offer! Negotiate with the insurance company. If you have questions, call an attorney. Negotiating is our thing. We can help you understand if this is a good offer or a bad offer.
Sometimes the offer is just so bad, that there’s no other option but to file a lawsuit. Now, if you need to file a lawsuit, we strongly recommend that you call an attorney. That process is very complicated.
Negotiating on your behalf for a higher settlement is what we do. We can tell you if what the insurance is offering is fair or not, and with an attorney, you usually get a higher settlement with less headache. We are on your team, we’re here to help you in any way we can.