Personal Injury Law (Accidents/Slip & Fall)/personal injury
QUESTION: Do a lawyer have a right to turn down a settlement offer from the insurance company without telling? He said they denied the claim. Now I found out they did make an offer.
ANSWER: Generally, the lawyer must keep the client advised and neither make an offer to settle, accept an offer to settle or refuse an offer to settle without the knowledge and consent of the client. However, if you and your lawyer think the case is, just for example, worth $20,000 and the insurance company makes an offer of $200, (nuisance value) then the lawyer, knowing the client's expectations and intentions could refuse the offer and consider the offer the same as a denial of the claim. But since you don't provide me with any further information I can't really give you a good answer, can I Howard? For instance, what was your settlement demand and how much was the offer?
---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------
QUESTION: He will not tell me what the demand was. He did not know what I would settle for because he did not ask me. The offer was 17,000. In the demand letter he told the insurance company I was eager to settle which WAS A LIE, and the way he said the accident happen was all wrong, he even had the witness wrong if he had let me see it before he sent it out i could have told him. when he took the case he said they accepted liability ,but after the demand letter WAS SENT, and three month later He FINNALY told me they was denying liability because I keep asking for the denial letter.
Wow, Howard, you sure can make things confusing. If the ins. company denied liability, how is it that they offered 17K? How did you learn about that? Maybe the insurance company said "we offer 17K and if not accepted within 20 days the offer is withdrawn and we will deny any liability". Is that what happened? Listen Howard, if you can't communicate with your lawyer and the lawyer won't explain things to you are do what you want him to do, CHANGE ATTORNEYS! You have an absolute right to change attorneys at anytime and if you do, you do not have to pay the first attorney anything out of your pocket. When the case is finally resolved, your new attorney will pay the first attorney out of the fee the second attorney earned by resolving the case. When you hire the new attorney make sure you tell him that is how you expect it to be done and put that in writing. That is my advice.