Is an Insurance Company Representative Contacting You?
Insurance companies employ adjusters and claims representatives in order to reduce their losses. They do so by minimizing the amounts that the companies pay out in injury claims. If you are contacted by an insurance company representative who asks you for recorded statements, medical records, your story, releases and other information, you should tell them that you are contacting an attorney. Insurance adjusters will often try to get you to make statements that are ultimately harmful to your claim, and you should never sign releases without an attorney’s review. The releases insurance companies frequently ask for are blanket authorizations that allow them to dig through your entire medical history. The reason they want to do this is so they can blame your injury on a pre-existing incident. This can result in your claim’s value being substantially reduced.
It is also important for you to understand that the reason adjusters contact you is because their company believes that you likely have a valid claim. They want to get the information that they need in order to help them with their goal of either minimizing your payout or denying it all together. This is true even when you are dealing with your own insurance company in a case involving an uninsured motorist. Don’t fall for their tricks and instead, consult with a personal injury attorney. Consulting a lawyer prior to speaking with a claims adjuster can protect your legal rights and the value of your claim. An experienced personal injury law firm can act as a buffer between you and the insurance representative that is trying to obtain a quick low cost the them settlement or to obtain information that they will use later to devalue your claim or deny responsibility altogether.
Here are some tips for dealing with an insurance claims adjuster after a car accident:
Be polite and professional: When speaking with the claims adjuster, it's important to remain polite and professional. Avoid getting angry or emotional, as this may hinder your ability to negotiate a fair settlement.
Gather and organize evidence: Before speaking with the claims adjuster, gather and organize any evidence you have related to the accident, including police reports, witness statements, and medical records. This will help you provide accurate and detailed information to the adjuster.
Don't admit fault: When speaking with the claims adjuster, do not admit fault or apologize for the accident. This can be used against you later in the claims process.
Don't accept the first offer: The initial settlement offer from the insurance company is often lower than what you may be entitled to. Do not accept the first offer without consulting with an attorney or doing your own research on fair compensation for your injuries and damages.
Keep a record of all communication: Keep a record of all communication with the claims adjuster, including phone calls and emails. This will help you keep track of what was said and agreed upon during the claims process.
Consider hiring an attorney: If you are struggling to negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company, consider hiring a personal injury attorney who can advocate on your behalf and help you navigate the claims process.