While it may seem like an easier option, it isn’t a good idea to accept a “cash settlement” at the scene of a car accident. Here’s what you should do instead.
What should you do if the at-fault driver offers you cash for your damages and injuries? Should you accept the cash? After all, it may seem to be an easier option compared to the lengthy compensation process with the insurance company. However, here is why it is not a good idea to accept a cash offer at the scene of a car accident.
Is Offering Cash Settlement at the Scene of the Accident Legal?
While it may not necessarily be illegal to offer a car accident victim cash to cover the damages or injuries they’ve incurred, it is not the right way to receive compensation. Instead, you should generally collect your compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance company.
Why Would an At-Fault Driver Offer Cash Settlement?
The top reason why an at-fault driver would offer you a cash settlement is to avoid paying you more. The at-fault driver may also not have insurance coverage and could offer you cash to avoid getting in trouble with the authorities.
Should You Accept The Cash?
No. Here’s why you should not accept a “cash settlement” at the scene of an accident:
Your Injuries or Damages Could Be More Serious Than You Think
A car accident can leave you with severe injuries, which may require prolonged treatment. Also, what seems like a slight scratch on your body might later turn out to be a serious and expensive injury. And a quick off-record settlement from the at-driver may not factor in your future medical bills. Therefore, it is always advisable to consult an experienced St. Louis car accident attorney to help you calculate a fair amount for injuries or damages incurred.
There May Be Other Additional Damages You Need To Recover
Aside from medical expenses and repair bills, the at-fault driver should compensate you for lost wages, pain and suffering, and emotional distress as mandated by Missouri laws. A cash offer at the accident scene will generally not factor in all of these damages. This is why you should consult a car accident lawyer to ensure you are receiving the full amount of compensation you are legally entitled to.
Speak With an Experienced St. Louis Car Accident Attorney
Have you been injured in a St. Louis car accident? Our car accident lawyers can evaluate the unique circumstances of your case and help you understand what your legal rights are. We have over 20 years of experience protecting the rights of car accident injury victims in and around St. Louis, Missouri.
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