Michigan attorney explains how insurance companies value settlements and how to make sure you get a fair amount.
Michigan law allows a person to trade workers’ comp benefits for a lump sum cash settlement. This money can be used for anything including medical treatment and vocational rehabilitation.
Some people use a cash settlement to start their own business or go back to school. Having a plan before you settle is the key to a great result!
Insurance companies value cases like any other business decision. Does it make financial sense for them to settle? Here are some items to consider when evaluating a settlement.
Insurance companies use different terms when describing weekly benefits. These include wage loss, temporary total disability (TDD), and indemnity payments. Regardless of the name, it all comes down to how much is paid each week and for how long. A good rule of thumb is to multiple your weekly check by 52 to get the annual rate. Insurance companies rarely pay more than 5 years of weekly benefits up front. Disputes about how much should be paid are very common and factor into settlement negotiations.
Nobody can predict the future when it comes to medical treatment. However, insurance companies estimate costs based upon what medical records show. Additional doctor visits, physical therapy, prescription medications, and even surgery can be factored into a settlement amount. Discuss future medical needs with your doctor before agreeing to any settlement offer.
Insurance companies sometimes use vocational rehabilitation as a tool against people. You might want to be retrained for a new career while they just want you to accept any job. We suggest doing your own research and getting a cost estimate for a program that would make your life better. You can argue that settlement should include money for retraining or tuition reimbursement.
Average redemption amount
Statistics published by the State of Michigan show the average settlement amount was $59,208.72 in 2014. People do not get rich off workers’ compensation. A fair settlement should include money for lost wages and medical treatment. An experienced workers’ comp attorney will be able to increase settlement value and help you plan for the future.
Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation today.
Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by Images_of_Money.