If you are injured in an auto accident in North Carolina, you are generally entitled to receive compensation for: (1) medical expenses; (2) loss of earnings; (3) pain & suffering; (4) scarring and/or disfigurement; and (5) permanent impairment or permanent loss of function. In order to receive compensation, you and your attorney have to prove to the at-fault driver’s insurance, or a jury, that your injuries were caused by the accident. You also have to prove the reasonable value of each of the categories above.
The process of obtaining compensation in an auto accident is fairly consistent from case-to-case. Normally your case starts by you or your attorney filing a claim with the at-fault driver’s auto insurance carrier. After you have finished your medical care, and after you and or your attorney have obtained all of your medical bills and medical records, then you and your personal injury attorney will discuss your injuries, your medical expenses, and the merits of your case, and arrive at an amount that you and your attorney would like to demand prior to filing. At that point, your attorney will send a written settlement demand to the at-fault driver’s auto insurance.
Normally 30 or more days will pass while the at-fault driver’s auto insurance adjuster reviews and evaluates your case. Eventually, the insurance adjuster will talk with your attorney and make a settlement offer. As you might expect, the initial offer from the insurance adjuster is typically fairly low; however, the adjuster’s low initial offer is usually negotiable. There is almost always some back-and-forth negotiating until the insurance adjuster delivers a best and final settlement offer. Once your attorney has received the insurance adjuster’s top and final settlement offer, that is the best time for you to decide whether you’d like to settle your case, or whether you’d like to file a lawsuit.
If you would like a free evaluation of your personal injury case, please feel free to contact Kreger Brodish and schedule a free appointment with one of our personal injury attorneys.