Being involved in a car accident is scary – especially if you were injured. In the hours and days after the crash, you may still be having difficulty remembering details or making sense of what happened. Unfortunately, it is during this critical time that you’ll need to speak with someone from the insurance company.
In most cases, the company you speak to will be your own insurer, as policyholders are required to report car accidents to their insurers in a timely fashion. Depending on the situation, however, you may also be contacted by the other driver’s insurance provider, asking for information.
You may think these conversations are no big deal. But it is important to know ahead of time that what you say (and avoid saying) to insurance adjusters could determine everything from coverage of your claim to your ability to pursue a personal injury lawsuit.
You pay for insurance coverage, and that should mean your insurer works in your best interests. But insurance companies make a profit by denying or limiting claim payouts, which puts their interests at odds with yours. As a result, the insurance adjuster for your own insurer is looking for any reason to either reject your claim or underpay it. The adjuster for the other driver’s insurance company owes you even less consideration since you are not a policyholder.
The bottom line: what you say in these seemingly innocuous conversations could be used against you later, so you need to speak as carefully as possible.
You’ll need to give some sort of report on the accident to the insurance company. But you may not need to say much beyond telling them that the accident happened and who was involved. Here are some important guidelines to follow in the initial conversation (and perhaps in follow-up discussions):
Insurance companies have attorneys working for them already, and those attorneys are looking out for the company. You should have a legal advocate in your corner whose interests are the same as yours.
If you want to learn more about how to speak to an insurance adjuster in a personal injury case, contact a lawyer who can help you navigate insurance claims. Call us today at the Saavedra Law Firm to arrange an initial consultation.
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