How Do Insurance Companies Lowball Car Accident Settlements in Florida?
Under Section 627.7407, Florida Statutes (the so-called no-fault insurance law), car accident victims must file a claim with their own insurance company.
Many injured persons mistakenly believe that their insurer will be on their side. However, just because it’s your insurance company does not mean that it’s your friend.
In fact, it is not uncommon for insurance in Florida to make low settlement offers to increase their own profits. The practice is also known as “lowballing” settlements. If you believe that your insurer gave you a lowball settlement offer, consult with a Miami car accident lawyer as soon as you can to protect your interests and negotiate a higher settlement amount.
Claiming that you were at fault
Just because Florida is a no-fault auto insurance law does not mean that your insurer would not claim that you were at fault with the intent to reduce your compensation. Under Florida law, your insurance company will provide compensation regardless of fault.
Your insurance company may claim that you were careless, reckless, or violated the law when the collision occurred in order to lowball your car accident settlement offer.
When this happens, it is essential to be represented by a car accident attorney to help you fight for the compensation you deserve.
Delaying the claims process
Section 627.736, Florida Statutes requires insurance companies to respond to Personal Injury Protection (PIP) claims – approve or deny them – within 30 days after receiving written notice.
Nonetheless, the insurance company may attempt to delay the claims process by not responding to your claim for weeks on end, failing to conduct an investigation in a timely manner, and taking other steps in an attempt to force you to accept a lowball settlement offer.
As your medical bills keep piling up and you have to miss work due to your injury, you are more likely to accept a low settlement offer because you are desperate to get at least any amount of money as soon as possible. However, doing so is not recommended because the insurer’s initial settlement offer does not reflect the full scope of your injury.
If you noticed that your insurer is trying to delay the claims process or you do not hear back from your insurer within 30 days, you could have grounds to sue the company for engaging in bad faith insurance practices.
Undervaluing your car accident claim
It is important to determine how much your claim is worth in order to submit a demand letter to your insurance company. When a claimant does not understand how much compensation they deserve, they are more likely to accept a lowball settlement offer.
It is advised to have a skilled lawyer on your side to calculate how much your claim is worth and avoid falling prey to your insurer’s lowball techniques.
Contact a Miami car accident attorney
If you were hurt in a car crash and your insurance company made a ridiculously low personal injury settlement offer, seek legal counsel from our Miami car accident attorneys at Pita Weber Del Prado.
Let our lawyers help you negotiate a fair settlement amount to receive the compensation you deserve. Our attorneys will calculate the value of your personal injury claim to help you recover damages for the full extent of your injury. Call at 305-670-2889 to schedule a consultation.