Plaintiff Severely Injured In Accident With SUV But Insurance Comapny Makes Low Ball Offer

 By: J. Hernandez
In this article we examine still one more claim in which an insurer made only low ball offers to settle a car case in which the victim endured a considerable injury. In this case an injury that genuinely impacted the victim's ability to work.

In this situation an individual driving an SUV was involved in an accident with bicyclist. According to the bicyclist, the driver was coming in the opposite direction when, suddenly, he made a U-turn right in front of him forcing the bicyclist to go over the SUV's hood. The bicyclist tore a cartilage in his wrist during the accident. This caused him difficulties at work where he was a mechanic for a high-end motor vehicle dealer. And a doctor testified that the victim's wrist will probably at some point have to be fused and that this will likely end his career as a mechanic. Because of this the victim would probably not be able to make as much money in the future leading to a loss of earning capacity.

This added the driver's employer as a defendant. At the beginning the insurance company for the driver made an offer to settle the case for $10,000. The week before the trial they increased their offer to $30,000.

The law firm documented that they rather than accept those low-ball offers took the claim to trial and the jury gave the plaintiff $550,000.

Here we have a claim where fault was not in dispute. What was in dispute was the value of the bicyclist's injuries. The insurer likely looked at this personal injury matter as only involving a minor injury that resolved itself fairly quickly. From this viewpoint an offer of $30,000 might appear reasonable.

But the law firm that helped the victim positioned the lawsuit so that it was not about an injury that resolved itself but about an injury that would come back to haunt the plaintiff in the future. The injury may not have necessitated surgery right away but it caused enough damage to the wrist that it would require in all likelihood, not only surgery but a fusion. And this would probably put an end to the victim's career as a mechanic of high-end cars. By letting the jury consider the full impact of the injury the law firm was able to obtain a verdict over eighteen times the amount offered by the insurer.
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