After a crash, you will need to discuss the situation with the other parties involved. However, while your main objective is to gather information to start your claim, the other party might request that you settle the crash privately to save money.
The other driver might ask if they can pay you out of pocket for your damages. Agreeing to do this can be a big mistake that limits how much you may recover. Here’s how this situation can impact your claim and what you should say if the other driver requests a private settlement.
Why Avoid a Private Settlement?
A private settlement with the other driver may seem tempting so that you don’t have to deal with insurance adjusters or legal matters. However, there are very few people who will have the personal funds to pay for your damages. After a crash, insurance companies should pay for damages because they have the means to do so.
If you agree to a private settlement, you may not recover as much as you should for your injuries. The other driver is not obligated to pay you compensation in the same way that insurance companies are. Don’t let the other person offer something that may not cover all of your losses, which may include high medical bills, property damage, lost income, and more.
What You Should Do Instead
Be polite with your interactions. Never promise to take a private offer, and instead let the other party know that you would prefer to handle matters with the insurance company and legal representation. From there, make sure you report the crash as you should and get a lawyer on your side.
Our North Dakota car accident attorneys at Pringle & Herigstad, P.C. put your needs first. We know how difficult it is to suffer damages because of someone else’s negligence. Trust that we will be there to protect your rights every step of the way.