I wish I could tell you the number of conversations I’ve had with wives over the years who have called because they’ve been involved in an accident or their husband has been involved in an accident and yet the husband insists that they not call a lawyer and that they are going to trust the insurance company to be fair with them. And, the wife is calling because she has a sense that this isn’t right and that maybe we aren’t being treated fairly.
If you find yourself in this situation, I would say reaching out to a lawyer is absolutely the best thing you can do to at least find out if what you’re being told through the insurance company sounds right. Insurance companies have entire scripts, themes and programs that their adjusters use to encourage people, like your husband, not to call a lawyer. They will suggest to you that they’ll be fair. They’ll suggest that the lawyer is going to take a percentage of your settlement and you don’t want to give away the money that you get to some lawyer. What they don’t mention is that statistics clearly show that people who have lawyers receive far more compensation than those who do not. And many times it’s entirely just shortsighted to think that if I pay a lawyer I’m going to come out behind when in fact the evidence shows that if you have a lawyer you’re going to come out further ahead in most accident situations.
I would just encourage, you in this situation, to call an experienced lawyer, explain the circumstances of the accident, get some sense from the lawyer as to what needs to be done and some sense of value or some sense of whether the insurance company has got this case in the right range. I think the worst thing to do is to look back two years, four years or five years later and say, wow, what a mistake, I should have called somebody.