Determination of the estimated value for a claimant’s injuries can serve as a guidepost, when it comes time for the adjuster to start negotiations, and to make the initial offer.
Outlining adjuster’s approach
First task: Speak with the policyholder, the person that the claimant has pointed to as the person responsible for the accident.
Next: Talk with claimant, or claimant’s lawyer; arrange to get all the needed paperwork.Study the company’s database, in order to learn whether or not another claim had been submitted earlier.
When those tasks are out of the way, the adjuster’s efforts can focus on determining the value of the reported injuries.
Learn the type of treatment used to correct for the claimant’s injury. Who administered that treatment? Was it a medical doctor or a chiropractor?
Some adjusters use a formula to calculate a figure that can represent the value of the claimant’s injury. In that case, a number between 1.5 and 5 gets used as a multiplier. It becomes one factor in a multiplication operation, with the total for the medical expenses as the other factor.
Personal injury lawyer in London know that some insurance companies provide their adjusters with access to a software program, and that program determines a given injury’s value.
Steps taken before adjuster’s offer has been made:
An adjuster-supervisor conference takes place. During that conversation, the supervisor provides guidance on what percent of the figure obtained, usually by using the formula, should be used in the opening bid. Adjusters have the freedom to take the supervisor’s suggestion, and to match it with other information about the submitted claim.
For instance, adjusters often check to see if the person that has submitted the claim has also hired a lawyer. Claimants that have failed to hire an attorney should expect to receive a lower bid. Those that do have legal representation usually get a higher bid.
The adjuster’s opening bid represents the start of negotiations.
Smart claimants compare the opening bid to the figure in their mind, the lowest acceptable offer. If the opening bid were close to that lowest acceptable offer, then the claimant should recognize the need to increase the amount in that lowest acceptable offer.
Ideally, there should be a counteroffer for every offer/bid. If the negotiations were to stall, then it might be necessary for the victim/claimant to think about filing a lawsuit. That would demonstrate the serious nature of what had been demanded so far.
Remember that adjusters do not like to create a situation where the company becomes the target of a lawsuit. Hence, the act of filing a lawsuit could work to overcome the existing holdup. Ideally, that act would succeed in pushing the adjuster to respond to the claimant’s most recent bid/offer.