Expert Witnesses Can Help Your Insurance Claim
If you are involved in an accident that was caused by another party, that party's insurance company should compensate you for all of your accident-related losses. Unfortunately, insurance companies are businesses and, like any business, their first priority is to protect their bottom line. This means that insurance claims adjusters will attempt to limit the company's liability. Sometimes, this means that injured individuals receive offers for settlements that are entirely too low based on their actual losses. Some injured victims may not realize that they have other options than to simply accept whatever offer they are given and they end up accepting a settlement that does not cover their medical bills, lost wages, and other damages.1 To avoid this mistake, anyone who has received an offer from an insurance company should have an attorney evaluate whether the offer is fair or not before accepting.
How insurance companies limit liability
Insurance companies attempt to reduce settlements in a variety of ways. Some of the claims an insurance company may try to make include the following:
- That your injury existed before the accident and was not actually caused by the accident.
- That your injury happened because of a subsequent event and not because of the accident.
- That your injury is less severe than you have stated and that some of the treatments you received were unnecessary and should not be covered.
- That you injury was not serious enough to have prevented you from working and losing income.
- That your own actions caused or contributed to the accident.
How expert witnesses can help with your claim
A local, experienced personal injury attorney of your choosing will have many different tools and negotiating tactics to use to help you obtain a higher settlement and refute wrongful claims by the insurance company. One critical tool is the use of expert witnesses who can present evidence to the insurance company to support all of your claims. There are many different types of expert witnesses who can significantly help in a personal injury case, some of whom may include:
- Doctors, specialists, and other medical professionals who can testify regarding the cause of your injuries, the nature and severity of your injuries, and the recommended treatments for your condition.
- Occupational experts who can evaluate your skills and abilities with your injuries in mind and testify regarding whether you could have returned to work or another type of job.
- Accident reconstruction experts2 who can analyze the scene of the accident, the damage to the vehicles, and other evidence that the other party was at fault in causing the collision.
Experts are individuals who have substantial education and training in their field and, for this reason, their testimony can carry more weight than that of a lay person. An expert’s testimony in support of your allegations can cause an insurance company to realize that your claims are all valid and offer you the full amount you deserve.
Expert witnesses do cost money for their analysis and testimony. However, that cost can be completely worth it if your recovery increases substantially. In some cases, the assistance of an expert witness can double or triple your settlement offer. A personal injury attorney can review your case and your settlement offer and help determine whether using an expert witness would be appropriate in your situation.
This post was submitted by Matt Dolman of Dolman Law Group of Clearwater, Bradenton and St. Petersburg, FL. Please click here to visit their profile page.