Avoiding Legal Trouble

Five Pieces Of Advice For Working With Insurance Companies After An Accident

Sometimes dealing with an insurance company can be more frustrating than an actual car accident. Here are five pieces of advice to help you get as much money as possible. 

1. Keep the first phone call short. All you need to do is let them know you were in an accident and a few minor details. Wait until the police file a report, all witnesses have been interviewed, and all the details are clear before giving any more information. 

2. Do not tell them if you were injured or not because you may not know yet. Simply inform them that you will visit with your doctor and will call back later. They will hold you to whatever you say during that first phone call. It is best to choose your own doctor so that you know your injuries won't be downplayed. Also, be wary of sharing any of your past medical history with the insurance company. They may try to say your injuries were preexisting. 

3. Don't demand too much money. While you don't want to ask for too little, asking for too much can also cost you money. When you ask for more than your case is worth, it shows that you don't understand much about your case. You want to sound knowledgeable. If the insurance company thinks you don't know what you are talking about, they will often offer less money. Find out the maximum amount that can be given out in your type of case before you discuss any amounts. 

4. Don't settle before you understand the full extent of all of your injuries. You will need your medical bills, copies of your records, and statements from your doctors. You might need to visit a chiropractor or a physical therapist for months. If you are too anxious to get your money, you may not get enough to cover all of your bills. 

5. Don't take the "final" offer. Many insurance companies will insist that the first offer is the "final" offer. It isn't. Talk to more than one individual at the insurance company. Do some research online to compare your offer with others from similar cases. Make sure that the insurance company has received all of your evidence. Ask for all offers in writing to help you keep track of the offers and to keep the offers to a minimum. If you don't feel like you are getting a fair offer, talk to a lawyer. 

The next time you are in a car accident, follow these five pieces of advice to make sure that you are treated fairly, and if necessary, hire a car accident attorney.