By Pendergast Law on October 9, 2010
Dealing with insurance companies after an accident can be complicated and confusing.
One of the most critical, yet often overlooked, issues is how to deal with insurance companies after you have been injured in an accident – your company and the defendant’s company. Understand that insurance companies are for-profit corporations. They make money by taking in premiums for their policies and then paying out as little as possible in claims under those policies.Here are six key things to remember when dealing with insurance companies:
1. Insurance companies are primarily interested in paying out as little as possible. The insurance company representatives are not your friends. Their job is to gather information about your claim that can be used to build a case against you.
2. Anything you say can be used against you to deny your claim. Be careful what you say to insurance companies. Do not answer any questions without approval from a qualified attorney – even the most casual thing you say to an insurance agent can be used to reduce your compensation.
3. Tell your doctor or healthcare provider about all your symptoms. An insurance company evaluates your claim in great measure on your doctor’s records and reports. So be thorough in reporting your symptoms and be diligent about following through with medical treatments.
4. Know that you may be investigated. An insurance company may hire a private investigator to monitor your physical activities and may even videotape you or interview your neighbors.
5. Negotiate on your own – at your own risk. If the insurance company has a qualified attorney on their side, it is smart for you to do the same. A personal injury lawyer in your area will know how to work with insurance companies and help you put together the evidence you need to prove negligence and get the compensation you deserve.
6. Never sign anything without consulting your attorney. If you sign a release, that ends your claim with the insurance company and you cannot file additional expenses or claims one you have signed it.
An important thing to know if that studies from the International Insurance Research Council show that people who used a personal injury attorney received 3 ½ times more settlement money than those who settled on their own.
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in an accident, you may be able to file a personal injury claim and get compensation for your injuries. If you think you have a claim contact our Seattle personal injury attorneys for a free consultation. You obtain the best possible legal services at the time of your injury without having to pay money out of your pocket for legal services. No recovery means no attorney fee.