Guide to Rear End Collision Settlements in Denver
Being involved in a rear-end collision may take you by surprise – few expect for a car behind them to hit their vehicle. Luckily, while rear-end collisions are one of the most common types of car accidents. They are also typically the least serious. This means that the majority of people walk away without any serious injuries. Sometimes the accident doesn’t even damage vehicles.
Unfortunately, not all rear-end crashes are insignificant. Sometimes, rear-end crashes are very serious. The accident may cause serious vehicle damage. At times, drivers and passengers suffer traumatic injuries. Often it is helpful to reach out to an experienced car accident attorney in these cases.
When a rear end crash occurs and damages–no matter how severe–are sustained, the affected party may bring forth a claim. Here’s what you need to know about the claims process and settlements for rear-end collisions in Denver:
Determining Fault and Filing a Claim
Colorado is an at-fault car insurance state. That means at-fault drivers have to pay for the damages that result from accidents they cause. This also means that an insurance company will require proof of fault before paying a claim. Drivers may file a claim within their own insurance company regardless of fault if they have certain insurance types. We can help you to prove fault. We work with accident reconstruction experts, gather evidence at the scene, interview witnesses, and more.
Determining the Value of Your Claim
Before you send a demand letter to an insurance company you will need to know the value of your damages. Keep in mind that no two rear-end collision settlements are alike because no two rear-end collisions are exactly alike. Each crash results in a varying degree of damage and driver/passenger harm. You have the right to seek damages for the full extent of harm you have suffered. This means you’ll have to calculate medical expenses, property damage, and more. We should note, however, that noneconomic damages are capped in Colorado.
Determining the value of your claim can be a tricky process. And proving the value of your claim to an insurance adjuster can be even more complicated. Our attorneys have the resources you need and can hire experts to testify on your behalf.
Negotiating for a Settlement Amount
The next step to reach a settlement is negotiating with an insurance adjuster. You want to agree upon a fair settlement amount. Again, it will be important to have resources and experts to back you up. Remember, you have to prove the accident was the fault of the other driver. In addition, you have to show that you’ve lost (or will lose) the full amount of damages you’re seeking.
Negotiations can continue for months, with both parties coming back to the table time and time again with a counter offer. During this phase, it is important to remember that you do not have to accept a settlement offer. An insurance adjuster may intentionally try to lowball your claim or drag out the settlement process in hopes that you will cave and settle. They want to let the insurance company off of the hook. You have the right to compensation for all damages you have suffered. So you shouldn’t accept a settlement that is less than what you deserve.
Filing a Lawsuit
In the event that you and the adjuster cannot reach a fair settlement, you do have the option of filing a lawsuit. You can bring the case to court for litigation. Keep in mind that the option to negotiate and reach a settlement out of court is always on the table up until a trial is complete. Sometimes, filing a lawsuit is the best option or the only option for recovering losses. Our law firm has trial experience, and we are confident in our ability to represent you in the courtroom.
Things to Keep in Mind When Seeking a Rear End Collision Settlement in Denver
We know that a crash can be emotional and challenging and that the settlement process can be onerous and stressful. As you navigate the rear end collision settlement process, we encourage you to keep the following in mind:
Fault is not always on the shoulders of the rear driver. Many people assume that a rear driver is automatically at fault for a rear-end crash, but this is not always the case. In fact, there are many instances where the front driver is to blame. For example, when the driver in front swerves in front of the rear driver, stops negligently, or has a vehicle with defective brake lights.
Never hyperbolize or lie. It can be easy to stretch the truth when talking with an insurance adjuster, but doing so could have serious ramifications for your claim. Never hyperbolize your injuries or how the accident occurred, and certainly do not ever lie. If you don’t know the answer to something when questioned, just say that you do not know.
Don’t admit fault. Colorado is an at-fault state. If you are to blame for the accident, you may have your compensation award reduced. Or, you may be ineligible to recover compensation from the other driver altogether. Never admit fault when speaking with an insurance adjuster. Remember that saying things like “I’m sorry,” can sometimes imply fault.
Contact an Attorney
You should always contact an attorney when navigating the settlement process. This is especially true if the rear-end collision causes serious damages or injuries. To learn more about how an experienced Denver rear-end collision lawyer can help you, contact the Law Office of Steve Roberts, LLC today for a free consultation.