Insurance adjusters used to use a simple formula for calculating settlement offers in personal injury claims, such as Orange County bus accidents. They would add up all medical bills, multiply by three, and add in lost earnings to reach what they felt was a fair settlement offer. This formula was used most frequently in soft tissue injury cases, but was never a hard and fast rule-more a general rule of thumb.
Now insurance companies use computer programs like “Colossus” to evaluate Orange County bus accident claims. Insurance companies claim that these programs have no formula, but evaluate each claim as unique. This is not true, and in fact, the new system works to the claimant’s disadvantage.
The computer program will calculate your medical expenses, and insurance companies will likely reduce this amount by about a third. Their estimate is based on what the program says your expenses “should” be, not what they actually are. Insurers (though they will deny using any formula) will then multiply this number by two, and that will be their settlement offer. Under this new method of calculation, a case that may have settled for $10,000 under the old formula will get an offer of just $4,000.
These shrinking offers mean that more cases go to litigation that would have previously been settled. This makes it increasingly important that you hire an experienced Orange County bus accident lawyer who will fight to get you the full amount you are due. If you have been injured in a bus accident in Orange County, call The Law Offices of Samer Habbas at (888) 848-5084 for a free case evaluation by an Orange County personal injury lawyer.