When you settle a claim with the insurance company for the negligent driver who caused your auto collision, the carrier won't immediately send a check. First, it requires you to sign a release of all claims form. This is a critical document for finalizing your case, so it's best to have it reviewed by an experienced car accident lawyer before signing it to protect your legal rights.
Common Provisions in a Car Accident Release of All Claims
A release of all claims form states that you agree to accept the amount the insurance company is paying you as a full settlement of your claim. Once you sign it, you agree not to pursue any other claim against the driver or the insurance company, and the case is resolved when you receive payment.
It's imperative that you understand the terms of the release before signing it. Here's a helpful overview:
- Settlement amount. The document should state the full amount of money you'll receive and how the carrier will pay it.
- Release of claims. Your signature is an agreement to release motorist at fault and the insurance provider from any future claims related to the collision. You cannot reopen your claim if you discover a need for more medical treatment or become permanently disabled.
- Indemnification. The release could contain a provision that you indemnify—which essentially means to absolve—and hold harmless the carrier and driver from claims by third parties to your settlement proceeds, such as a medical provider who may have a lien against your settlement.
- Waiver of right to sue. By releasing the insurance provider and motorist from further liability, you give up the right to file a lawsuit and take the case to a jury trial.
- Confidentiality. The release could also include a stipulation that you agree to keep the terms of your settlement confidential. If you violate this provision, the driver and their insurance carrier could have grounds to sue.
- No admission of fault. A common agreement in a release of all claims form is that the insurance company and motorist don't admit any negligence or fault by entering into the settlement with you.
The legal consequences of settling your car accident case and the variables of the release of all claims forms can present some challenges. To find out about my extensive experience settling auto collision cases and how I can assist you, fill out the online form to schedule a free consultation today.