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Auto Insurance Claims/Auto Accident settlement

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Question
Hi

I had a rear end collision couple of months back and suffered considerable soft tissue injury as evidenced by MRI, long term physical therapy, chiropractic, trigger point injection etc.  

The last opinion from my doctor is that the lingering pain will continue for a long period and I need to continue exercises shown by the physical therapist and pain medication as needed.  

I have finally decided to settle the case and would give a try myself before involving any lawyer.  

Question :    In my first settlement offer to the (other party's) insurance,  should I ask for a specific settlement amount or ask for their best offer  and then go from there ?

Answer
The negotiation is a process.  There is usually some back and forth.  The insurer's first offer will probably be  at the bottom end of their settlement value range.  So you can probably get their best offer around the third number they extend.  Your first demand should be the top end of your range, and then you drop back some.  Hopefully you meet in the middle.

I will comment on a couple of items you mentioned.  Soft tissue injuries are muscle strains.  That is all they are.  They are never permanent.  They get worse the first 24-72 hours and then start to heal.  They normally resolve 100% in anywhere from a few days to a few months, depending on severity.  Unless there is a structural problem with a disc or the vertebrae, the pain should not linger long term.  Trigger point injections are highly controversial and some "medical providers" use them excessively and charge exorbitant fees to do so.  there is an entire industry built around making money off car accidents.  So you may find the insurance adjuster views this differently than you.  And the insurers know what happens when these cases go to trial, because they have plenty of experience with it.

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Claims Guy

Expertise

I am currently an Auto Claims Manager for a large insurance company. I have 20 years experience in the industry, having worked as a Claims Adjuster, Injury Settlement Negotiator, Claims Manager, SIU/Fraud Investigator, and Compliance Officer......I can answer questions related to any aspect of Automobile insurance claims and coverages. I can provide an inside look at how insurers operate. I always treat my customers fairly and want to help make sure you are treated fairly. However, please keep in mind that being treated fairly according to the law does not guarantee that you will get what you want. I can also answer some questions regarding Homeowner's and other types of insurance claims. I have handled all types of auto insurance claims and coverages. I am NOT an automotive repair expert but can give advice re how insurers handle complex repair issues. Please keep in mind that every state has its own set of laws pertaining to rules of the road, liability, and insurance. No one is an expert on every state. I am most familiar with laws in Maryland, DC, West Virginia, and Virginia, but will attempt to answer questions for other states. I am not an attorney an cannot provide legal advice. My advice will be my opinion based on my experience.

Experience

I am currently an Auto Claims Manager for a large insurance company. I have 20 years experience in the industry, having worked as a Claims Adjuster, Injury Settlement Negotiator, Claims Manager, SIU/Fraud Investigator, and Compliance Officer. I am not an attorney an cannot provide legal advice. My advice will be my opinion based on my experience.

Organizations
CPCU Society. Adjusters license in multiple states. International Association of Specal Investigators

Education/Credentials
I have a B.S. in Finance and have completed the AIC and CPCU designations.

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