Dealing with the Insurance Adjuster After an Auto Accident
Being injured in a car accident is an extremely overwhelming experience. Not only do you have to worry about getting immediate care for your injuries, it’s very common to feel unsure about what you should and shouldn’t be doing. When injuries are involved, people often feel stressed out about unwittingly saying or doing something that might end up making it difficult for them to get all of the compensation they need.
In the time after a car accident, it’s only a matter of time before victims are contacted by an insurance adjuster. When this time comes, the adjuster will likely seem friendly enough and approach you as someone who is simply trying to understand what happened. But it’s extremely important to remember that insurance companies have a vested interest in paying out as little money as possible. No matter how nice and friendly an adjuster might seem, insurance companies don’t necessarily have your best interests at heart. It’s their job to settle claims as quickly as possible for as little money as possible and will look for any reason to deny them all together. Here are a few important things you should know when talking to an insurance adjuster.
In the aftermath of a car accident, don’t try to rely on your memory to keep track of everything that happens. Lots of things will be going on and it can be very easy to forget some of the details that relate to your case. If you’re contacted by an insurance adjuster, write down the name of the person you talk to, the date and time of the conversation, and note exactly what was discussed. This kind of information can be very important for your case if you need to file a lawsuit.
Limit the Conversation
If you’re contacted by an insurance adjuster and you don’t have a lawyer present at the time, remember that you are not required to give a recorded statement about your accident. You don’t even have to tell them any details of how the accident occurred or your injuries. Stick to basic facts like your name, your contact information, where you work, and what your occupation is. Limiting the conversation to those basic details helps you avoid giving them anything that could be used against you.
For example, if you talk about how an accident occurred, they might try to twist your words into suggesting that you admitted fault. Or let’s say that your injuries end up being more severe than doctors initially realized. Sometimes, injuries aren’t easy to detect or take time to become evident. If you tell an adjuster about less severe injuries and later find out you have other injuries or that your injuries were worse than originally thought, the insurance company might try to claim you’re exaggerating your injuries.
Resist Pressure to Settle
Insurance companies want to be able to settle claims as quickly as possible because it’s easiest for them. They also know that accident victims also want to be able to move on and may need the extra money. But as tempting as their offer might be, don’t accept anything without talking to a lawyer first. There’s a chance that the settlement they offer won’t cover all of your needs. While some people are able to fully recover from their accident injuries in due time, many others will need ongoing medical treatments, therapy, and/or in-home care for years to come so it’s important to make sure that all of your care will be covered. An early settlement might only cover a small part of the care you need.
Talk to a Car Accident Lawyer
Dealing with insurance companies can be extremely intimidating, but having a lawyer on your side can help make a difficult situation easier to handle. At Goodwin & Scieszka, you’ll be able to get help from a car accident lawyer experienced in helping Michigan accident victims. Our lawyers are used to taking on insurance companies and holding them accountable. Contact us to find out how we can help.
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