If you were injured by someone else’s negligence, you will likely hear from an insurance adjuster soon after. It is important you understand the insurance company’s interests are against yours. Adjusters are looking for any reason to reduce the value of your claim.
That is why having an experienced Fort Worth personal injury lawyer on your side is critical. He or she can help protect your claim when insurance companies work to devalue or minimize your injuries or attack your credibility.
Below are some of the most common tricks insurance adjusters may use.
Offering a Settlement Right Away
It is common for insurance adjusters to contact you on the same day of the accident. They are hoping to catch you off guard and to get you to say something that can later damage your claim. They may try to get you to agree to a quick settlement before you ever have a chance to contact a lawyer or have a better idea about future damages you may experience.
Calling You Immediately
The insurance adjuster may contact you immediately to try to convince you to record a statement. The adjuster may claim that this will “speed up the process,” but they are looking for information to use against you.
Some of the tricks they may use include:
- Getting you to say you are “fine” after an accident to use as evidence that you were not really injured
- Getting you to minimize the extent of your injuries
- Getting you to admit you were partially at fault
- Asking leading questions to try to get you to say something that is advantageous for the insurance company
Asking for Medical Records
Insurance adjusters may also try to get you to sign a medical release form. While it makes sense that the insurance adjuster will need your medical records and bills to pay your claim, a blanket release form will allow the insurance company to access all your medical records. Insurance adjusters will carefully comb through these records to find anything that may give them a reason to deny your claim, such as a pre-existing injury, even one that has completely healed.
The insurance company may deny your claim for various reasons:
- Claiming you were actually responsible for the accident
- Arguing you could not have been injured in the way you claimed based on the point of impact
- Blaming a third-party for the accident
- Arguing that your injuries are more extensive than would reasonably be anticipated under the circumstances
When an insurance company denies your claim, it does so because it hopes that you will simply give up. It is looking to call your bluff.
Bad Faith Tactics
Insurance companies are expected to handle claims in good faith. However, they may use bad faith tactics that may subject them to additional liability, such as:
- Not investigating a claim
- Denying a claim without a reason
- Refusing to pay on a valid claim
- Threatening the policyholder
- Offering compensation that is far below the value of the claim
Contact a Texas Lawyer for Help
Insurance companies often tell victims they should not hire a lawyer because it will be too expensive. However, the licensed attorneys at Anderson & Cummings work on a contingency fee basis, so they do not get paid unless they secure compensation for your claim. Statistics have shown that accident victims who have a lawyer on their side often receive larger settlements than when they are unrepresented.
We can discuss your claim and legal options during a free case review. There is no obligation so there is no risk to you.
We can be reached by phone anytime, day or night to set up your free case review. (817) 920-9000