What is an insurance claim settlement?
A claim settlement is an agreement between two or more parties to settle a legal claim with payment and other terms. One of the most common forms of claim settlement involves an insurance claim, often following a motor vehicle accident. When people make claims against an insurance policy, the company reviews the claim, determines if it is covered under the terms of the policy, and offers a settlement to pay the claim. In some cases the settlement offer is accepted. In some cases, people may dispute the circumstances or amount of the claim, and the case may end up in court.
When a claim is settled, it usually cannot be reopened
It is important to know that settling a claim usually eliminates the right to make any future claims about the legal matter. If people are not satisfied with the terms of a settlement, they should renegotiate. Once a settlement is reached, the claim cannot be reopened at a later date.
Claim settlements can be resolved in trial as well
Legal cases where people are filing for civil damages are resolved with claim settlements as well. Sometimes the person being sued, called the defendant, may offer to settle before the case goes to court, a situation commonly seen when the defendant believes that going to court could result in a costly award or could create negative publicity. In other instances, a settlement is reached during court proceedings, with a judge or jury awarding damages to the plaintiff and the defendant being ordered to pay them.
Terms of a claim settlement affect both plaintiff and defendant
The terms of a claim settlement require both parties to abide by certain terms. The party paying out is required to pay out in full within a specific time frame. The party receiving a payment may be required to maintain confidentiality regarding the matter.
People who are unfamiliar with the legal system should be aware that a claim settlement can be used abusively. Before signing documents related to a settlement, the documents should be carefully reviewed by an injury lawyer.