Why Online Car Crash Settlement Calculators Are Often Inaccurate

woman using calculator by laptopThe internet and smartphones have made information available at the touch of a button. While you can research and figure out many things on your own, some tasks are better left to experienced professionals.

For example, you may have seen online crash settlement calculators that supposedly tell users how much their claims may be worth. Unfortunately, these calculators do not do a good job of giving users the full picture about the value of their claim.

These calculators are only as reliable as the information you put into them. However, they do not ask for all the details you would need to accurately determine your claim’s potential value.

That is why you should seriously consider working with an experienced attorney. At TSR Injury Law, we have decades of experience determining the value of car crash claims. We have also recovered millions on behalf of crash victims.

Why Settlement Calculators Are Inaccurate

Like other online calculators, those used for car crash claims ask you for a variety of numbers to calculate the value of a settlement. For example, these calculators are likely to ask for the value of:

  • Past and future medical costs
  • Repairs for your vehicle
  • Replacement value of your vehicle if it was declared a total loss
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Damage to other personal property besides your car
  • Pain and suffering
  • Other non-economic damages

At first glance, it may seem like these calculators are helpful if you have the information you need. However, how do you determine the value of your lost earning capacity or your pain and suffering? There is no set value for these kinds of damages. Their value is based on a variety of unique considerations.

For example, most car crash settlement calculators ask victims to rate their pain and suffering. Their rating is then multiplied by another number, such as the value of economic damages. However, this is an arbitrary calculation. Attorneys and insurance adjusters do not arbitrarily calculate the value of a victim’s pain and suffering. They consider the facts of the situation, available insurance coverage and other relevant information.

Calculators are programmed to assume pain and suffering is worth more if the victim has a significant amount of medical expenses. This may be true in some cases, but there are many other variables to consider. Think of it this way: medical treatment may be so successful that it leaves the victim with few long-term problems. That scenario may result in minimal pain and suffering even though the medical treatment was very expensive.

It is also important to remember online settlement calculators only consider the data you give them. They are not accounting for the unique factors of your situation, such as:

  • The severity of your injuries and whether a doctor will relate all the injuries to the crash
  • Your medical records
  • How you respond to treatment
  • Your specific job skills
  • Future lost earnings
  • Prior similar injuries
  • Scar cases usually do not have a lot of bills but are traumatic to the injured party
  • What is your health insurance type and what subrogation claim is being made against the settlement
  • How many insurance companies are at fault and what percentage does each agree on
  • Are your doctors board certified
  • What is the Brewster number that the insurance company actually owes versus the full amount of bills; and
  • Other relevant factors, the biggest is without legal counsel no insurance company will be concerned about a lawsuit that would actually hold them accountable, so they will offer the least amount possible

Injuries can have a devastating impact on a victim’s life, even if the medical care was successful. The victim’s treatment may end, and he or she may have little ongoing pain and suffering. However, the injury may prevent the victim from engaging in a hobby he or she used to enjoy. Settlement calculators are not built to factor in these things.

Why It Is Better To Have an Attorney Evaluate Your Claim

Experience can be very important when pursuing compensation after a car crash. For example, attorneys who have handled denied or undervalued claims before have a much better idea of how to proceed. They have helped people with a variety of claims and know what it takes to be successful.

Attorneys have learned how to evaluate injuries and loss of earning capacity. It is about more than simply assigning something a number. At TSR Injury Law, our Minneapolis car accident lawyers can also consult medical professionals and other experts, as needed. This additional expertise helps us to not only bolster a claim, but also to determine its value.

In short, attorneys can provide nuanced analysis that you are simply never going to get from an online calculator.

The number an online calculator spits out does not carry any real authority. Even if you think the number the calculator gives you is reasonable, the insurance company may lowball you. When this happens, you need an experienced attorney to negotiate with the insurance company.

You also want an attorney with courtroom experience who is prepared to file a lawsuit. Even if your case does not end up in court, filing a lawsuit may help. Often, it could be just the push needed to get the insurance company to make a better settlement offer.

Call TSR Injury Law To Discuss Possible Legal Options

The attorneys at TSR Injury Law are ready to help, and we have a proven track record of success. There are no upfront costs with our services. There is also no obligation to work with our firm after your free initial consultation. In other words, there is no risk in meeting with one of our experienced attorneys to learn how we may be able to assist you.

Car crashes can cause devastating injuries and financial upheaval for victims and their families. You do not want to solely count on the insurance company to provide the compensation you need.

TSR Injury Law. Proven Results. No Upfront Fees. (612) TSR-TIME

Do Insurance Companies Undervalue Car Crash Claims?

man reading letter in shockThere is no question insurance companies regularly undervalue car crash claims. It is often shocking to see the gap between the insurance company’s initial offer and the final amount an attorney recovered. Sometimes the victims in these cases are permanently injured, yet the insurance company’s offer barely begins to cover medical treatment.

The good news is attorneys are often able to negotiate with the insurance company to obtain significantly more than the insurance company initially offers. However, you need an experienced attorney with a history of results.

Call TSR Injury Law today to learn more about how our Bloomington-based car accident lawyers may be able to assist you. We have recovered millions on behalf of car crash victims. The initial consultation is free.

Below, learn more about why insurance companies undervalue claims and what your attorney can do about it.

Reasons Claims are Undervalued

Insurance companies are a business, and like any other business, they must make a profit to survive. In other words, they need to have more money coming in than going out. For an insurance company, that means taking in more money with customer’s premium payments than they pay out in compensation to injured people.

Insurance companies’ interests are at odds with the interests of their customers. It is in the best interests of the insurance company to look for some way to deny or lowball a claim.

When the insurance company cannot flat out deny a claim because there is enough proof of liability on their behalf, the second option for them is to at least devalue the claim. But the insurance company needs to give a reason for why a claim is not worth the amount you are asking for.

You Caused the Crash

Insurance companies often say this even when it seems blatantly obvious you are not at fault. In a case where the victim was hit by another car whose driver was excessively speeding or did not have the right of way, the insurance company may claim you made some minor mistake and that was the cause of the crash. They argue you are 10 percent at fault for being on the road. Every 10 percent reduction adds up to their profit margin.

You must be careful what you tell the insurance company because an innocent statement like “I was in a rush,” will be used against you.

The insurance company may cite your failure to wear a seat belt as a reason to deny your claim even though it has nothing to do with the actions of the other driver.

You are Partially at Fault

Even if you are partially at fault, you can still seek compensation for your damages. However, insurance companies like to pin significantly more fault on victims because if you are found to be more than 50 percent at fault, you cannot recover any compensation, no matter how hurt you are.

It is best not to take the insurance company at their word about your percentage of fault. You should discuss the issue with your lawyer, and above all do not admit fault to the insurance company.

Your Injuries are not That Serious

There is a myth that soft-tissue injuries are not as bad as broken bones. However, soft-tissue damage can cause lingering pain and other medical problems

The people who work at insurance companies are not doctors. Medical professionals are the ones who should judge the severity of your injuries. Often, the severity of an injury is not known right away. It takes weeks or months for doctors to see how a patient responds to treatment to determine the long-term impact of a car crash injury.

It is important to not give the insurance company something to use against you. That is why it is important to seek treatment right away and continue that treatment. That makes it harder for the insurance company to argue about how bad your injuries may be.

You did not Seek Treatment Quickly Enough

Insurance companies will look to see when you sought treatment after the crash. If there is a significant gap in time between the crash and the date you first sought treatment, they may use it against you. Minnesotans are often injured in crashes, but delay seeking medical care. They assume the “pain will go away”, or do not like visiting doctors or have a “high threshold for pain.” All of these are real reasons to delay seeking medical treatment, but they are also ammunition for the at fault insurance to claim you are not hurt. The insurance company will say you were injured because of something else besides the crash and you are just trying to get money.

You did not Continue Your Treatment

If you stop going to treatment, you risk having your injuries worsen. You also give the insurance company a reason to devalue your claim. If you stop treatment, they will argue you are fine and do not need compensation for future treatment. Stopping treatment allows the insurance company to call your credibility into question.

Need Help After a Car Crash? Call Today

Talking to a lawyer can be an important step after suffering an injury in a car crash. You cannot rely on the insurance company to take care of you.

Our experienced attorneys have seen how insurance companies deny and devalue legitimate claims. We have also challenged them and secured compensation for many victims.

Our attorneys work on contingency, which means there are no upfront fees and no fees while we work on your case. There is no risk in contacting us.

Millions Recovered. No Upfront Fees. Call (612) TSR-TIME.