If you have ever been involved in an accident, you understand how anxious one can get. In between trying to comprehend how it happened, how the car is damaged, or how you are injured, one may be erratic and may make some wrong calls. The only right call you should be making is to your attorney. Of course you should first notify your insurance company. However, when making the call to the insurance company, try to stick to only the necessary facts such as location, time, and the people involved.
Do not go into the details of the injuries you have suffered, how damaged the car is or how the accident happened. Consult with your attorney first before you go into the detailed aspects of the accident or injury. It is also in your best interest not to give a recorded statement of the accident without your attorney.
Moreover, you are not under any obligation to talk to the other party’s insurance company or sign any documents concerning the accident without consulting your attorney first. Let’s review the main reason why you shouldn’t contact an insurance adjuster first and the tactics they may use to mislead you.
An Insurance Adjuster May Deceive You
This is the major reason why you shouldn’t talk to an adjuster first. Insurance companies always find ways to pay a small amount or even exempt themselves entirely from any liability. It is a way of making profits if they can collect more from clients and spend less during accidents or other unexpected events. Therefore the adjusters can use every deceitful tactic to confuse you. Here are some of the tricks that these adjusters use to avoid getting insurance claims.
Dissuading You From Hiring An Advocate
Not only will the insurance company discourage you from hiring an attorney they will also offer ways you can settle the matter without involving an advocate. Some adjusters may tell you that involving a lawyer will render null and void the compensation they will give you. Yes, a lawyer receives a certain percentage of the payment you will be given, but you will still get more and get the value for the money paid to the insurance company. It is easy to fall into such traps, especially when you are still recovering from the accident.
Calling You Immediately After The Accident
In case of an accident, the insurance will first hire an adjuster to assess the accident and gather evidence that will be used in case a lawsuit proceeds. Therefore after contacting your insurance company, they will link you up with an adjuster first.
The adjuster will try to get to you fast and win your trust so that you cannot hire a lawyer. The insurance company is aware that if you contract an advocate, you may get 2 to 5 times more in settlements, and thus, their goal is to get to you first. The adjuster also hopes to talk to you before you learn the extent of your injury and the damage cost. To be on the safe side, you can avoid talking about the following with the adjuster on the phone;
- Avoid discussing the injuries you have incurred
- Do not discuss any pre-existing injuries
- Avoid giving them any references
- Take charge of the conversation. Do not allow them to rush you
- Do not admit any mistake
- Avoid disclosing your social insurance number
They May Ask You To Sign Documents
The adjuster may want to take advantage of the tension and confusion of accidents to get you to sign documents. In most cases, the documents may take away your rights to get better compensation. Take some time and carry out calculations with your attorney before agreeing to sign any documents. Also, give your attorney to review any documents that the company will provide you.
Luring You Into Giving Recorded Statements
the call is being recorded for quality purposes; this is one of the many statements you will hear from insurance companies that denote that they are recording your call. Decline to make any recorded statement without your injury lawyer. Some of these statements may be used against you to cut down on your compensation. Noteworthy, you are not obligated to make any recorded statement; therefore, nobody should force you to do so.
These are some of the tactics used by adjusters to deceive you and also ensure that the insurance company does not incur high costs during accidents. When taking up insurance, we have high expectations that the company will deliver if you are met with a crisis. However, your expectations may be dulled by a tricky adjuster whose goal is to damage your claim. Therefore to avoid landing into such traps, ensure you first talk to your advocate.