There are approximately 2 million rear end collisions occurring in the United States annually. Of this amount, about 50% involve a stationary object. A rear end collision is unique in vehicular accidents. There is usually a clear indicator of who exactly is at fault. This does not mean, however, it will be easy to obtain a fair rear end collision settlement from the insurance company. It will be up to the victim to provide sufficient evidence to prove his or her case
Factors To Consider
A rear end collision, like many other types of vehicle accidents, consists of damage to two different components. These are the vehicle and the individual. Both may require replacement parts or at least some form of attention – either medical or automotive repair.
- Vehicle – you need to decide whether the car is a total write-off or in need of restorative repair. Your insurance company will provide an estimate as well as their preference. It is up to you to decide whether their stance on this is valid
- Personal – you may require medical care. There may be soft tissue damage e.g. whiplash. You could also suffer long-term damages. Be sure to consider such things as doctor’s bills, physical therapy, work loss, and other related “special damages.” Do not neglect other aspects resulting from the accident such as pain and suffering (general damages). Not all insurance companies will cover general damages. This is particularly true in a no-fault state.
Proving Your Case
The onus is on you to obtain the information to pass on to the insurance company – yours and that of the at-fault party. The insurance companies will do their own due diligence and arrive at a specific sum. It is up to you to provide them with accurate information. You must also be ready to back up your figures if you disagree with their settlement. To do this you need to
- Inform the insurance company immediately about the accident
- Report to a medical professional and keep accurate records of their initial and subsequent treatments and assessments
- Gather expert testimony about your condition
- Make sure you obtain a police report
- Keep all documentation in an orderly fashion and make sure the company has a copy
- Be prepared to refute the company’s “expert” findings with qualified and experienced experts
Hiring A Lawyer
Consider hiring an attorney to help you in your fight to obtain a fair rear end collision settlement. An experienced attorney will know state regulations and be capable of presenting your case effectively to the insurance company.