In the immediate aftermath of being involved in a car accident, the last thing you want to be focused on is how to talk to an insurance claims adjuster. Rightfully so, your focus needs to be on receiving medical care for any injuries you sustained and getting your vehicle back on the road. However, you are going to have to talk to an insurance claims adjuster soon after your car accident, and you need to know how to approach these conversations. Handling conversations with claims adjusters in the wrong way could result in your settlement being significantly reduced.
The most important aspect here is to remember that claims adjusters are not your friends and that they work for the insurance carrier. Unlike a Santa Ana car accident attorney, their goal is to ensure you receive as little money as possible for your settlement. They will use various tactics in order to reduce your final settlement. Yes, the claims adjuster is likely going to be incredibly friendly, but they are also shrewd negotiators.
You may still be angry about the accident, particularly if another person caused the incident. However, being angry with the claims adjuster is not going to help you get a fair personal injury settlement. You should be calm and polite when speaking to an insurance claims adjuster, as this may help them handle your claim more promptly and may convince them that your story is correct.
Before you discuss anything with an insurance claims adjuster, get the name, phone number, the business address of the person you are speaking with. Make sure you know which insurance carrier they are representing as well as the name or business of the policyholder they are covering.
You only need to give the insurance carrier limited personal information, including your full name, address, and telephone number. Feel free to tell them where you work and what kind of job you have. However, you do not need to go into any other details about your daily life activities, your work schedule, or your income.
Insurance claims adjusters may ask you to give a statement about how the accident occurred. You do not need to give any information other than the most basic details about the incident: when it happened, where it happened, the vehicles involved, in the identity of other drivers and witnesses. You can tell the insurance claims adjuster that your own investigation into the accident is ongoing, and you will discuss all of the facts at a later time.
The insurance claims adjuster is going to want to know about your injuries, but do not go into any details. At this point, you may not know the full extent of your injuries, or you may leave details out when speaking to the adjuster. Tell the adjuster that you are still receiving medical treatment, and leave it at that.
You may be offered an early settlement for your claim. While it may be tempting to take an early offer, you need to understand that initial settlements are often well below what you should be receiving for your claim. Never accept an offer until you know the full extent of your losses, and only accept an offer that covers these expenses.
An insurance claims adjuster may tell you recorded statement about the accident or your injuries. You do not have to do this and make sure to tell them that you do not consent to recorded statements.