You should always consult an attorney who is experienced in personal injury negotiation and litigation before you provide any statements to an insurance company. Even if the insurance company is your provider, you should still consult an attorney. Many people don’t even hesitate to speak with an insurance adjuster.
Often, the first thing we do following a car accident is call our insurance company. It’s one of those phone calls after an accident that just seems like first nature. We call police or medical assistance. Then we call our family. And then after the scene has somewhat settled and we are no longer in immediate danger, we call our insurance provider. We proceed to tell them everything that occurred. We explain what we were doing before the accident, where we were coming from, where we were going, who was in the car with us, and what we were specifically doing at the time of the collision. We then proceed to discuss any damage to our vehicle or injuries we have suffered. During this time we are entirely focused on rebuilding the damage and getting back to normal as soon as possible. We often do not consider the incredible damage we might be causing by speaking with an insurance company. While insurance companies aren’t bad; speaking to them prematurely or providing excessive information can be harmful to the recovery process.
Frequently after an accident, an insurance claim adjuster will call you and say that they are assigned to your case and will be working with you. Many people mistakenly believe that this means that the insurance company is working for them. That is absolutely wrong. The insurance adjuster works for the insurance company. This is often very confusing. They use language that leads you to believe that they work for you and have your best interest in mind. They say things like “I’m here to help you,” or “I will be assisting you in your recovery process.” This language is used specifically to make you trust the insurance company and believe that they represent your interests. In reality, the insurance adjuster works for the insurance company.
Often the insurance company will do everything they can to delay, diminish, or deny your claim altogether. They are in the business of making money and they cannot make money if they are giving it all to you after your accident. The insurance company will strictly analyze your statement and the statements of everyone else involved in order to uncover ways to reduce your compensation or to deny your claim entirely. They want to pay you as little money as possible. Think about it this way: when you buy a new car you shop around. You research online, you visit different dealerships, you compare different brands and models and when you do decide which car you would like to purchase you probably haggle with the dealer in order to get the best deal possible. You do not want to pay any more than you absolutely must. The insurance company takes a similar approach when evaluating your claim. Consequently, this means that everything you say can be used against you.
Anything you tell a representative of the insurance company will likely be documented and heavily scrutinized later. As mentioned before, insurance adjusters use specific language to make you feel comfortable enough to tell them anything. And they are working harder each day to research your case to reduce your claim against them. Things that people would often not consider relevant to the case can completely alter negotiation settlements. Simply stating where you were coming from when you were involved in a car accident or mentioning something insignificant that you were doing at the time of the accident can be escalated by the insurance company to show that you are at least partially liable.
Often you will be contacted by the insurance provider of the other person involved in the accident. Many people are relieved when they find that the other person, who they believe is at fault, is also insured by the same insurance company. In most cases, this can actually be worse. Due to this common provider people will think that the insurance company will not fight hard to challenge the claim. When this situation arises the insurance company used by both parties will often have the exact opposite reaction. If the insurance company represents both you and the other party who caused the accident, they will be responsible for compensating you both. They must compensate you for your personal injuries and the damages to your vehicle. And they will be required to pay the other driver for any of their personal injuries and vehicle damages. Essentially, when both parties are represented by the same insurance company, the end result is a double pay out by the insurance provider. Insurance companies in this situation will work even harder to find ways to reduce or dismiss your claim.
You should never speak with an insurance adjuster prior to consulting an attorney. They will be looking for any reason they can find to delay, reduce, or deny your claim and prevent you from receiving just compensation. You should consult an attorney who is experienced in personal injury negotiation and has a long standing history of dealing with insurance companies. Grossman Law Offices has been helping people like you, who have been hurt in car or truck accidents, for over 20 years. We care about our clients and work diligently to protect your rights. We also understand how difficult the recovery process can be after an accident. The last thing you should have to worry about is handling manipulative insurance companies all by yourself. If you have been involved in a car accident and need assistance dealing with insurance adjusters, call Grossman Law Offices at 1-855-392-0000. We’re available day or night.