When you have been involved in a car accident, you are placed in a situation where you’ve got to deal with an insurance company in order to be compensated for your injuries or damages. You are likely in a situation in which you have so much going on that you often find yourself just wanting to get things over with so you can move on to more important matters.
Talking to the insurance company might be one of those things that you want to just get done so you can move on. That could be a very large, and costly, mistake. The insurance company is not on your side. Their job is to save as much money as possible, and that means trying to pay out as little money on your claim as possible.
That’s why you need an attorney to help you navigate the process of dealing with the insurance company. A qualified attorney can ensure that you don’t say or do anything that might jeopardize your claim. Let’s look at a few examples.
“I think I’m fine.”
After your car accident, you may get a call from the other party’s insurance, often within about 24 hours of the accident. This person will say they’re just calling to check on you. They just want to make sure you’re all right. That’s so compassionate and kind, isn’t it?
Except it’s not. What’s really happening here is that they’re recording your conversation. And when you tell them that “I think I’m fine.” or “I’m not injured,” you’re giving them the ammunition they need to dispute your claim.
Not all injuries are immediately apparent after an accident. Even if you feel fine and are fairly certain you’re not injured, you should never say that to the insurance company. A good car accident attorney can coach you on how to phrase things so that you aren’t dishonest about what you say, but also leave things open in case a latent injury crops up. The truth of the matter is that you may not know if you are injured yet, and you are under no obligation to make that prediction or determination about your injuries before you have been properly evaluated by a medical professional.
It’s an offer, but not nearly enough
Adjustors work for the insurance company, not you. When they assess your injuries, or the damage to your car, they’re going to try to offer you as little as possible, to save their employer money. The best, and only, way to get what you deserve is to be polite, courteous, and firm.
But when you’re in pain, or out of work, from the accident, being polite, courteous and firm may be the last thing you’re capable of, or even want to do. A qualified car accident attorney works for you, however, and can fight on your behalf. Your attorney can be firm and let the insurance company know that their offer isn’t good enough. Sometimes merely knowing you have an attorney is enough to do this.
The court process is confusing
If all else fails, and your case needs to go to court to be resolved, trying to represent yourself is going to be an even bigger nightmare than everything you’ve dealt with so far. Your car accident attorney is familiar with the process. He can tell you exactly what to expect, whether it’s even worth going to court, and what your chances of winning are. He also has the skills, and staff, to gather evidence, prepare the paperwork, and deal with all the things that you may not understand, or want to deal with.
Hiring a good lawyer to help you navigate the process of filing a claim can save you time, frustration, and ensure that your claim doesn’t end up unpaid and closed before it even truly begins.
Call our law offices today at any of our convenient locations and get a free consultation.
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