Texas Car Accident Lawyers: What to do if an Insurance Company contacted you?
Following being hit by a car or any other incident that causes you injury, you may receive a phone call. On the other line could be an insurance adjuster wanting to talk to you about your recent accident claim. You might not be prepared to talk to them. Talk to Texas car accident lawyers first.
Dealing with a car crash in Texas, as well as the car insurance company, can be a hassle. So, it’s important to be cool, calm, and pay attention when talking to any of their representatives.
During your initial post-accident phone contact, you need to choose what information to share, especially if you believe that the other party is to blame for the accident. Here are tips from experienced Texas car accident lawyers on how to deal with insurance companies when they call you:
Maintain a calm and courteous demeanor
Insurance companies investigate accident claims. One of their processes is talking to you and other parties that were involved. Additionally, they also try to get copies of police reports and medical records of the people who were filing a claim.
When your or the other party’s auto insurance company contacts you, you have to maintain your composure. Venting your frustrations and anger about your accident and your injuries to the insurance adjuster will not help you with insurance negotiations.
Some insurance adjusters talk to you and try to get you emotional. Sometimes they do it with great empathy that you’ll want to try to overshare.
The disadvantage of doing so would be you won’t know if the adjuster’s goodwill would continue to go your way. That’s difficult to know for sure so it’s always best to keep your cool and stay professional. If unsure of how to respond, you can always hire Texas car accident lawyers.
When working with an insurance company, there are eight car insurance adjuster secrets to keep in mind:
1. Insurance adjusters and their representatives are skilled negotiators.
Despite being helpful, the insurance adjuster is not on your side. An insurance adjuster’s goal is always synonymous with the company’s interests.
Insurance companies train their expert claims adjusters to improve their negotiating and public speaking skills. Plus, they’re their goal is to reduce the amount of money paid out on each claim, which typically means denying the auto insurance claim or failing to recognize the true value of the case.
Keeping this in mind will help you anticipate what questions car insurance companies ask after an accident and adjust your answers accordingly.
2. Insurance companies do not have to treat yours fairly.
Forget about what you’ve been told about in insurance ads! At the end of the day, insurance policies are products for a for-profit business. If a company can lessen the chances of paying out a big claim, it will. In fact, this is why the first offer is always a lowball offer.
If you are attempting to submit a claim against the other driver’s insurance company after an automobile accident, they will likely try to lowball or treat you unfairly. Even if the other motorist is on your side and cooperates, your claim may still be denied or delayed by the insurance company.
3. Give no information about your injuries.
An insurance adjuster will want to know more about your injuries. They would do everything to get you to say the nature and degree of your injuries. Don’t go into too much detail when you’re talking to them.
The main reason why you shouldn’t talk to them in detail about your injuries is that they will use anything you say as the official record. During the conversation, you might’ve forgotten or missed a detail about your injuries. Another reason is that you might uncover an injury later, or your injury might be worse than you thought.
If you need to communicate with the adjuster, simply state that you are “still under treatment” after the accident took place and leave it at that. They will get copies of your medical bills, which should be enough for your claim.
4. Don’t accept the first offer the insurance company gives you!
Most people want immediate financial assistance following a car accident. They can use the money for vehicle repair or pay their medical fees. Insurance companies recognize the weaknesses of automobile accident victims.
They use it to inevitably offer a lowball settlement as soon as possible. They want you to feel desperate in taking an amount that will probably not cover your medical bills, property damage repairs, and lost wages.
For example, accepting the first offer would be able to pay for your first few medical treatments. Down the line, you suddenly had more complications due to the injuries, which did not manifest when you were talking to the insurance company. This means the first offer won’t be able to cover the full degree of your injuries.
Dealing with these types of situations is the best reason for wanting to consult a car insurance attorney or personal injury attorney and a car damage lawyer.
5. Your insurance company will make every effort to avoid paying your medical bills and property damage claim.
The insurance company will argue that you are lying about your injuries. Or worse, they can accuse you of committing fraud. If they can prove that this is true, they can reduce your settlement amount. They will argue that your injuries were from a pre-existing ailment. It’s actually the usual tactic especially if you did not seek medical attention right after the event.
Remember that you have to keep copies of all medical records. It’s important that you attend your doctor’s appointments and follow up on any treatment recommendations.
6. Do not consent to be recorded.
Many claims adjusters will pressure you to give a recorded statement or ask if they can record your phone conversation in the hopes of protecting you afterward. Do not allow any part of your communication to be recorded. There is no law that requires a recording. If an adjuster records you without your explicit permission, then they are breaching the law.
Declining to be put on record would also help you keep calm and courteous. When recorded, most people become nervous. Aside from being forgetful of vital details, you may also describe things in a clumsy or incomplete manner.
A verbal statement or conversation is rarely as detailed and thorough as the written communication you’ll provide the insurance company at a later time. The problem is recordings are given considerably more weight than they deserve as proof of what occurred. It is difficult to change or expound what you’ve stated in a recording, which can be misconstrued. So, it’s never to your advantage to be recorded.
7. Whatever you say will be used against you.
Insurance adjusters will try to convince you to accept their account of the accident. Do not accept it blindly!
A great way to do this is by thinking carefully and clearly about the questions that have been asked. If you’re asked to make a statement, you have to be careful that the statement you’ll share will not be construed or misinterpreted at all.
Again, DO NOT AGREE TO BE RECORDED.
Having a car insurance attorney or personal injury attorney would be of great advantage when this happens. When an adjuster or insurance company rep contacts you, you can firmly tell them that you would want your lawyer present for the conversation. Your attorney would be able to advise you on how to handle the questions.
8. Never sign anything until you’re confident you understand it or had it reviewed by your car insurance attorney.
When it comes to contracts or binding paperwork, most often the statements there are heavy on the legalese. It’s fairly difficult for most people to 100% fully understand the contract or paperwork. Plus, there is also something called “fine print,” which most would also not bother to inspect. In signing such a document, you won’t even know that you’ve given up your rights to sue or seek additional damages.
Again, you cannot rely on your insurance company to look out for your best interests if you have been wounded or seriously injured in a car accident. Contact a lawyer, someone who can conduct the talks on your behalf. They can help in reducing the complications of dealing with an insurance provider.
An attorney who has handled car accident cases before can represent you when talking to the insurance company. They can ensure that you obtain full and fair reimbursement for your injuries as well as any property or vehicle damage. Plus, they can guide you so you know what to ask your insurance company after the accident. They can also give you legal options on how to settle car accident without insurance.
Furthermore, if an insurance company fails to process your claim in a reasonable timeframe or uses other illegal techniques to prevent you from receiving the compensation, an expert car accident attorney may be able to assist you in filing a bad-faith insurance claim.
Talk to your Texas Car Accident Lawyers in Austin, Texas
Aside from dealing with an insurance adjuster, it’s best to talk to a Car Accident attorney so you would know all your legal options. There is a possibility that you may need to file a lawsuit against others aside from the other party involved in your accident.
For example, there is a chance that you may sue an insurance company if they do not give you the right compensation for your valid claim. Suing an insurance company is complex and you should consider discussing it with a personal injury attorney near you.
A Texas Car Accident Lawyer in Austin can also hold practice in other cities within the state. Luckily, if you are in Texas, you can talk to lawyers at Roxell Richards Injury Law Firm. We have more than 15 years of experience dealing with car accidents and the insurance companies of our clients.
Legal fee financing can be daunting. But you’re in luck! We can work on your case on a contingency basis. You pay absolutely ZERO at the start. Once we’ve won your case, that’s when we will take a commission as your payment.
Contact us today at contact information such as our local phone number (713) 974-0388 or via our toll-free number 1-855-GOT-INJURED to get started. Get free case reviews and free consultations. Learn more about your legal options. Call us TODAY!