Many personal injury plaintiffs run into the same problem of trying to determine whether to settle the case or to pursue the claim in court. This article will discuss the advantages of settling a motorcycle accident claim and what makes a good settlement amount.
It must be noted that motorcycle accidents in Anchorage today are an everyday feature, as a result if you are injured in a motorcycle accident the question you will be asked is whether you want to settle your claim or not. Let us consider some of the advantages that come with settling your motorcycle accident claim.
- Compensation guaranteed - settlement is done when compensation is provided after both parties in a legal dispute come to an agreement after some form of negotiation. The defendant’s insurance coverage will pay up to its limit, however, if the negotiated amount is over and above the policy limit then the plaintiff will need to collect the balance using other collection means. By settling your motorcycle accident claim you are guaranteed of the policy limit as the insurance company covers this cost. As compared to receiving a large jury award in a trial where the defendant has few or no assets to collect from, in which case the plaintiff will receive the policy limit and nothing more despite the jury award.
- It must be noted that trial is an expensive process; this includes the cost of hiring expert witnesses, travel costs, etc. Settling your claim relieves that financial burden on the parties involved in the case
- Court cases have no set period of time that they run for until an actual jury award is given. Therefore, settling your case saves you a lot of time as this can happen fairly quickly as compared to a court case that could run from a minimum of over a year to over several years.
- A settlement offer provides convenience when it comes to structuring what works best for both insurance company and the plaintiff. For example, an agreement can be made that instead of the plaintiff receiving a once-off payment he or she may receive a structured settlement[What is a Structured Settlement and How Do They Work? (annuity.org)].
- Settling your motorcycle accident claim takes off the uncertainty of receiving an unfavorable jury verdict at the trial. This is likely to be the case where evidence is scanty or witnesses do not come and provide the required testimony.
Most people question what a good settlement looks like as they feel safe in the idea of a jury providing a compensation amount that is fair in their eyes. The reality is that a good settlement amount provides for the following:
- Medical bills - any medical expenses that you have incurred must be included in your compensation amount. This includes doctor bills and hospital bills, physical therapy bill, cost for your prescription, etc. In addition, they must include future healthcare expenses that you are likely to incur due to the accident.
- Lost wages - any wages lost because you are unable to go to work
- A drop in earnings as a result of disability
- Damages for pain and suffering for any physical and emotional pain caused by the accident; for example, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment of life and mental anguish; including future damages.