Often, personal injury claims are handled out of court and without the need for an attorney. Knowing what to do to settle out of court can save you a lot of money over the cost of legal proceedings, hiring an attorney, and various court costs.
Other times, it’s best to get a personal injury attorney for larger settlements, or when the insurance company isn’t offering you an out-of-court compensation, that’s worth it.
Legal Proof From a Medical Professional
Let’s take a look at how a personal injury claim works. When you go to the hospital and are treated for a specific injury, you’re legally considered to be “injured.” Because of how the legal system is set up to function, there will need to be legal proof that you’ve sustained an injury from a qualified medical professional.
The Process of Settling Out of Court
If you decide to settle out of court, the insurance company will have you sign a form that releases them from any liability in court. You’re not allowed to seek financial compensation through the legal system for your injuries after signing the documents the insurance company requests. After this point, you will be provided with payment for the injury sustained without the need for any legal proceedings.
Usually, an insurance company will try and settle out of court immediately if they’re legally responsible for paying for your injuries. If you decide not to drop out of court, then all treatment that’s the insurance company’s responsibility to pay will be paid by them.
Medical Authorization Form
A medical authorization form will have to be signed by your insurance company. An insurance company won’t pay the bills until they have this document signed and returned to them.
On the other side of the coin, the person who caused your injury will have a medical authorization form sent to you as well, but you don’t have to sign theirs until you’re ready to settle in court.
The person who caused the accident will have their insurance company represent them, and their insurance company will only pay after you finally settle in court. Insurance companies will pay close attention to your treatment regimen, and anything deemed unrelated to your accident injury won’t be paid by them.
Settlement Claim Form
Once you’ve received all the appropriate treatment and you’re back to “pre-accident” status, you will be asked by the person responsible for the accident insurance company to sign their medical authorization form. You can sign it and return it to them, or you can turn in the appropriate medical proof of your treatment just like a lawyer would. Most people decide to sign the medical authorization form that allows the insurance company paying for your treatment the right to review all treatment provided to you about the accident.
It’s the insurance company’s job to compare your injuries to similar cases to come to an award amount. Their first offer will be the lowest amount they believe the jury would award you. Some people have negotiated this amount to a higher figure, but not many.
Once you’ve agreed, the insurance company will send you a settlement of any claims form to fill out. After that, payment is issued, and the claim is settled. The insurance company will then reimburse you for the medical bills as well.