When accepting an auto accident settlement from an auto insurance company, they will ask you to sign a form releasing them from further liability associated with the accident. Here are a few things you should do before accepting such a release form:
Double Confirm That the Money Is Right
The first thing is to confirm that the money you are getting covers all the damages associated with the accident. This is important because you will not be entitled to additional compensation once you sign the release form. Therefore, go over your list and value of damages with a calculator and confirm that the figure is right. You also need to confirm that you included all the possible damages and you haven't missed anything.
For example, you don't want to sign a release form only to learn a couple of weeks later that the "mild" back pain you have been feeling is a sign of a serious issue and needs surgery. Ideally, you should only sign the release form once you have reached your maximum point of improvement. Preferably, you should get the assistance of a car accident lawyer, especially if large sums of money are involved, to help you with the confirmation.
Understand the Scope of the Release
Few things are as bad as signing a legal document you do not understand. Signing a document may be as simple as scrawling something scribbles on a piece of paper, but the implications are serious and undoing your agreement may be complicated or even impossible. You should specifically confirm that the release form has listed all your damages, the parties involved in the claim, the liabilities for which the defendant is seeking relief, and the amount they have agreed to pay you as compensation.
Clear the Air with Your Insurance Company
Lastly, if you are dealing with a third party claim, you shouldn't sign a release form without consulting your auto insurance company. Your auto insurance company may have a say on whether you should sign the release or not. This is particularly true if your insurance company had paid out some of your claims, such as medical bills, because it may be seeking to recover the money from the defendants' insurance company. Signing a claim in such a case makes it impossible for your insurance company to recover damages from the defendant's insurance company.
As you can see, signing a release form is not something you should take lightly. Consult a car accident lawyer to help you understand exactly what you are getting into by signing the form.Share