When you get into an accident, all you want to do is to file a claim against the liable party and get the compensation you deserve for the damages caused. After all, you are legally entitled to a settlement from the driver’s insurance company. However, knowing what is fair can be extremely complicated, especially if you are dealing with a legal case for the first time.
Insurance companies are experts in manipulating car accident victims so that they can lower the claim and give you less money. This is why it is important to seek assistance from an attorney. Part of the advice that your attorney will give you is telling you to wait until you reach MMI. To know more on the subject, consult with an attorney and get answers to questions about personal injury.
Reasons to wait to settle until you reach MMI
- Accurate calculation of your settlement.
Until you reach your maximum medical improvement or MMI, it becomes difficult or impossible for an attorney or legal professional to calculate your damages accurately. You do not know what your claim is worth until your treatment is completed, so you should not settle before you fully recover.
Your doctor can only give you a diagnosis and treatment plan, but they cannot tell you the exact future medical costs. Other future costs include lost wages and pain and suffering damages. You must include your current as well as future damages to ensure you get the amount you deserve.
- The settlement is final once you sign the papers.
When the insurance company offers you a settlement amount, and you agree to it, there is no going back. Once you put your signature over the agreement papers, you cannot undo it. You will have to accept the amount they give you, regardless of the extra costs you endure later. You cannot reopen the case to claim new damages.
For example, if you settle the claim before reaching MMI and later find out that you need to get an expensive surgery as a part of your treatment, you may have to pay for it on your own.
Should you wait till you reach MMI to retain an attorney?
Even though it is recommended not to settle the claim before reaching MMI, hiring an attorney as soon as possible after the accident is still important. You need a lawyer so that he can investigate your case and tell you what your claim is worth.