When you make an insurance claim, whether it’s for property damage, personal injury, or anything else, the insurance company needs to verify the details of your claim before they can begin to consider paying the amount you’re owed. To do this, they utilize insurance adjusters who may visit the scene, inspect damages, interview those involved, gather official records, etc.
If they agree with the events of your claim, you may receive reasonable compensation. However, that’s not always what happens.
Insurance adjusters are one of those positions that many brand as “amoral”, if not outright evil. But are they actually the bad guys? As with any job, there are certainly insurance adjusters out there who may not be good at what they do. But that doesn’t mean that insurance adjusters as a whole are out to get you. Most of the time, they are simply doing their job.
The insurance companies who hire them want to pay as little as possible on claims. And those adjuster work for the insurance company, not you. While the number of claimants who may exaggerate their claims is extremely low and not nearly as significant as insurance companies would have you believe, it’s important to realize that insurance adjusters are always wary of that.
It’s the job of the insurance adjuster to control the situation and steer the narrative. That mentality can cause a lot of headaches for injured people with legitimate claims. If you’re not careful, they can essentially trick you into accepting less compensation than you’re entitled to.
Handling Insurance Adjusters
The most powerful tool an insurance adjuster has is often the testimony of the person making the claim. You need to be very careful with what you say to your insurance company. Immediately after an accident, insurance providers will almost certainly ask for a written or recorded statement. You should assume that anything you say can and will be used against you later on in the claims process.
While you should inform your insurance company that an accident has taken place, you do not have to give any further details or specify fault. You should also be cautious when it comes to sharing medical information.
Often, adjusters will ask for medical records and even medical authorizations to obtain your records. You may think they’re referring to the doctor’s visit you had immediately following your accident. However, providing a medical authorization means the adjuster can obtain past medical information as well. Those prior records can then be used to downplay or deny injuries that you sustained as a result of someone else’s negligence.
They may also try to lowball you with an initial offer, claiming that it will help save time and avoid all the red tape. The truth is, it will just save them money and resources. Never settle for less than what you’re owed. The best way to make that happen is to speak to a personal injury attorney.
Many insurance adjusters are not out to get you. However, your best interests aren’t their top priority. A personal injury attorney works directly for you, which means you are the only priority. An experienced attorney knows the system and the strategies insurance providers use to undercut or deny claims. The earlier you speak to an attorney, the better off you’ll be.
For a personal injury and vehicle accident attorney in Hamilton, Ohio and the surrounding communities, contact The Richards Injury Firm today!