What is a good settlement if my daughter was rear-ended while sitting at a stoplight in a rental car?

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What is a good settlement if my daughter was rear-ended while sitting at a stoplight in a rental car?

The rear-ender was insured and the insurer took care of the car. My daughter went to rgent care with mild whiplash. I used my insurance to pay my $40 co-pay and $25 in pain killers. My daughter off work per doctor’s orders (unpaid internship) for 3 days. The insurer offered $600. Is this a good deal?

Asked on October 14, 2013 under Personal Injury, Ohio

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

It would be premature to settle the case until your daughter completes her medical treatment and is released by the doctor.  She may need physical therapy.  When she completes her treatment and is released by the doctor, she should obtain her medical bills,  medical reports and documentation of wage loss.

Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  It is irrelevant that the medical bills were paid by insurance.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of your daughter's injury and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering which is an amount in addition to the  medical bills.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.  Since this is an unpaid internship, there wouldn't be any wage loss claim.

I would ask for quadruple the medical bills to compensate for pain and suffering, but not expecting to get that.  The insurance company will respond with a lower offer and negotiations can continue.  The $600 that is being offered by the insurance company is ridiculous and should be rejected.  If the case is settled with the insurance company, NO lawsuit is filed.  If your daughter (assuming she is at least eighteen years old) is dissatisfied with settlement offers, she should reject the settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence against the at-fault party.  The registered owner of the vehicle who caused the accident should be sued if this is someone other than the at-fault driver.

If the case is NOT settled, the lawsuit for negligence must be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or your daughter will lose her rights forever in the matter.


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