In order to settle a case, you must be willing to try the case. A settlement demand, like everything else we do, has the end in mind, which is a trial. The bottom line is what we can prove for a client, and that is something we want an insurance company to know when we make a demand. Here are a couple of considerations when making the settlement demand.
We want to show the insurance company that their insured is responsible for causing our client’s injury. There are a lot of ways to do this. Sometimes, it’s pretty obvious. Other times not. We may retain experts, including engineers or accident reconstructionists to prove that the defendant was responsible for causing our client’s injury. In the more obvious cases, a police report, witness statements, and collision scene photographs get the point across.
We also prove that our client was injured, and how it affected our client not only in the weeks and months following the injury, but for the long haul. Many times, we represent people who have life altering injuries, which change everything in a permanent way. Again, proving this permanent change and loss involves careful preparation, and consultation with medical providers and other experts.
We also have to have the numbers. Those include past economic damages, which could be medical expenses, out-of-pocket costs, even the cost of home modifications to accommodate a disability. But there’s also the future. Our client may have lifelong medical needs, and that’s where a life care plan comes into play. Economists can also help us determine our client’s future lost earning capacity, or future lost income.
The goal of our settlement demand is to show the insurance company that we are ready to go, and will try the case if necessary.
If you have a serious injury claim in Oregon or Washington, and you want to know your options, call us at 503-325-8600. We have a lot of experience to share.