One of the first calls you will receive after being involved in a
motor vehicle accident is from the at-fault party’s insurance company. The adjuster you
speak to might seem very eager to help you, but you should not be fooled
by this. Keep in mind that he or she is working to protect the best interests
of the insurance company and, unfortunately, what is good for the company
is bad for you.
Before you engage in any of these discussions, keep some of the following
helpful tips in mind so you can better field your way through any conversations
you have with the insurance adjuster handling your claim:
Stay calm and always be polite: You are likely frustrated, given the circumstances, but taking out your
stress and anger on the insurance adjuster will not make things easier
for you. While he or she is not serving your best interests, being rude
will only aggravate the situation and likely make the adjuster handle
your claim at a snail’s pace.
Find out who you are speaking with: Before you get started, identify the person you are speaking with. Write
down the name, a contact number, the company he or she represents, and
the individual the insurance company represents. Knowing the name of the
insurance adjuster you speak with is critical if you need to refer back
to a previous conversation.
Only provide basic information: At this point, you only need to provide a limited amount of information
to the insurance adjuster, such as your name, address, telephone number,
and when the accident occurred. You do not and should not discuss your
injuries, especially so early on when you might not even know the extent
of them yourself.
Do not provide details regarding the accident: The insurance adjuster will undoubtedly attempt to get a statement from
you regarding the details of the accident. Without even formally asking
for a statement, he or she might try to engage you in a casual conversation
about it to glean as much information as possible from you. Instead of
indulging this conversation, politely refuse to discuss the accident and
only provide basic facts, such as when and where the accident occurred,
and the vehicles that were involved. Remember, you will be providing details
at length when you and your personal injury attorney draft a demand letter,
so there is no need to dive into it before then.
Always take notes: You might end up having to speak with the insurance adjuster on several
occasions, so take notes regarding whatever was discussed during these
conversations, including who you spoke with and any requests that were made.
Do not be in a rush to settle: Insurance adjusters are also often eager to get injured victims to settle
early on. These quick settlements are often not enough to cover the costs
of your injuries and other damages suffered. However, these offers are
usually made early since it is likely you do not yet know the extent of
your injuries or have even a vague estimate of what your claim is worth.
As such, it is in your best interest not to accept these early settlement
offers. Remember, once you accept an offer, your case will be closed and
cannot be reopened simply because you realized it was not enough.
It is also vital that you seek the representation of a skilled personal
injury attorney early in the claims process. Your attorney will be able
to further advise you on how to handle these conversations or even speak
with the insurance company on your behalf.
Personal Injury Attorneys in Oneonta
If you were injured in a motor vehicle accident that was caused by someone
else’s negligent or careless actions, you must contact a
personal injury attorney to ensure you are able to secure the compensation you deserve,
which can cover your medical bills, lost wages, and more. At Scarzafava
& Basdekis, our personal injury attorneys in Oneonta will fight for
the compensation you need to get back on your feet.
For the representation you deserve, call our office today at
(607) 229-1885 to schedule your free initial consultation with a knowledgeable member
of our team