The Insurance Company Offered Me a Check Right After My Texas Car Accident. What Should I Do?
After you’ve been in a wreck, the pile of medical bills and vehicle repairs can look overwhelming. Many victims want to accept the first insurance offer they receive to get the whole process over with sooner. But what if the first offer can’t cover all of your damages?
As a Houston, TX, client-focused car accident law firm, we care about protecting your rights and financial well-being, so we want to help clarify complex insurance misunderstandings. Continue reading to learn how you should handle insurance quick settlement offers.
How Long Should It Take To Receive an Offer?
Texas insurance code states that insurance organizations must respond to filed claims within 15 days. By the 15-day mark, the insurer must acknowledge your claim and begin the investigation. Next, the organization will accept or deny the claim or request an extension for further investigation (up to 45 days).
If the company accepts your claim, it has 15 days to investigate and extend an offer, though it can request another extension.
Should You Accept Your First Settlement Offer?
The insurance company offered me a check right after my Texas car accident. Why?
Every insurance company’s main goal is to pay you as little as possible. If the company sends a rapid settlement offer, it may signify that the insurer wants you to accept the funds before realizing the full extent of your damages. For example, in cases involving injuries, the insurance company may want to provide an offer that doesn’t reflect the future medical procedures and therapies you’ll require.
Usually, the first settlement offer will be below your total damage amount. Insurers offer this low figure because they know some victims will accept it when they don’t fully understand the process. Instead, we recommend speaking with an attorney before accepting any offer, whether you received it quickly or not.
Receiving the Compensation You Need To Recover
Hiring an attorney to communicate with the insurance company can improve your claim’s settlement results. At Haines Law, we understand that car accidents are emotionally, physically, and financially draining events, so we want to do our part to help you seek the money you need to recover.
With the help of an experienced attorney, you can seek compensation for the following:
- Current and future medical bills
- Property damages
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Loss of income
- Loss of household services
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional damage
- Mental trauma
- Reduced quality of life
- And more.
What To Do When the Insurance Company Contacts You
An insurance agent calls or emails you with an offer that sounds hefty at first, puts you on the spot, and you don’t know how to respond. So, what should you do after you receive your first offer, rather than accepting it?
- Don’t respond: Don’t respond with an exact yes or no answer. You can either ignore the email or, if you’re on the phone, say you can’t answer until you’ve consulted with your lawyer.
- Contact a lawyer: Set up a free consultation with our team so we can analyze your case, damages, and offer’s amount. We will navigate the settlement process, communicate with insurers, and help you seek maximum compensation for your case.
Need Help Dealing With Insurance Companies? Contact Our Team at Haines Law
If the insurance company offered you a check right after your Texas car accident; you should speak with an attorney before making a decision. Contact us at Haines Law in Houston, TX, today to schedule a consultation with our experienced team.