Visitor Question

Is the Rental Car Company Offering a Fair Settlement?

Submitted By: Anonymous (USA)

I was in a accident which was no fault of mine. My injuries included an abrasion on my face from the air bag. I also had shoulder, neck and back pain.

I’ve already got a settlement offer for $4,500. I walk away with $2,995.00 after the bills are paid. I want to know if I can get a second opinion because I wake up still in pain and it slows me down. I also have a friend in the accident, her offer was $5,000. She walked away with a broken arm and a few other things.

I called my lawyer and told him I don’t like the amount, he went to $4,500 for me. I don’t want that cause my friend had a broken bone and her offer is $5,000. Come on now! It is a major rental car company and I don’t think that’s a fair offer for me and my friend.

I feel like something is not right with the man over our case. We haven’t signed the settlement papers yet cause we feel that our lawyer is insane. I mean is that fair or not?

My friend deserves more then me cause she had a broken arm. She’s gotten only $500 more then me. That seems crazy to me. What should we do?

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Anonymous,

Insurance settlements have tightened up substantially in the last ten years. What a lawyer could once demand $25,000.00 for is now a litigation battle with the constant threat of trial immediately around the corner.

So, you may have a couple factors at play here: An experienced insurance adjuster who knows the tide of the industry and a conservative lawyer who knows that a case with an offer of under $10,000 should not be tried.

Now, looking strictly at numbers, you should know that most adjusters have a formula (some even use a computer program) and this generates a settlement offer based upon factors such as medical bills, property damage totals and the biggest factor of all – liability limits.

The party that hit you may have a $15,000 cap. It would be relevant to know your medical bills. Typically, if you can get a settlement in the range of 2.5 to 3 times your medical bills plus out of pocket expenses and lost wages, you are doing pretty good.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: May 6, 2010

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