Automotive insurance carriers have never made it easier to file a claim than they do right now. Most people can file a claim against their own insurance through an app or quickly submit documentation to the insurance provider for another driver who caused the crash through a website.
That accessibility and speed might make you think that you can handle the process on your own. However, trying to manage a major car insurance claim could mean making big mistakes. The five reasons below are arguably the top reasons for you to hire an attorney for a claim after a serious crash.
1) What you say at the scene can hurt your claim
If you’ve ever watched a television show that focuses on law enforcement, you know that people who get arrested for a crime have the right to remain silent because what they say can affect their rights in court.
While your situation doesn’t require knowledge of your Miranda Rights, you need to know that the things you say at the scene of a crash could affect your claim in the future. Apologizing to the other driver or stating that you have even partial fault for the crash could hurt your case.
2) The insurance adjuster might try to trick you into implicating yourself
If you need to make a big claim against someone else’s policy, you will likely have to make a statement to an insurance adjuster. They may require a recorded interview in person to approve certain claims.
You have the right to bring a lawyer with you, and the lawyer representing you will be able to stop you from falling victim to leading questions and other tricks used by insurance professionals to limit someone’s right to compensation.
3) You may not understand what the policy will cover
Insurance policies are often too dense and full of jargon, making it difficult for the average person to understand what they mean. A professional who knows how to translate the dense rhetoric of an insurance policy will make it easier for you to make necessary and reasonable claims.
4) You may need help negotiating a settlement
Insurance companies will sometimes offer a settlement. A single payment will have to cover the damages to your vehicle, any wages you didn’t earn and medical bills you accrued.
It can be hard to put a price on your injuries and even harder to push back against an insurance settlement offer that is far lower than it should be. Attorneys have training in negotiation skills and also understand what an injury may be worth in court.
5) A lawyer knows when you need the courts to help resolve the issue
Insurance negotiation tactics are often aggressive. Some agents will stonewall claimants, refusing to respond to emails or messages, making people feel powerless and like their only choice is to accept whatever offer is on the table.
An experienced personal injury attorney can tell you when it’s time to stop negotiating and to start litigating. The bigger the impact of a crash on your quality of life and finances, the more important it is to push for the compensation you deserve after the collision.