What You Should Know Before Talking to an Insurance Adjuster
In Colorado alone, roughly 12,000 people are injured each year due to car accidents. When this happens, the victims must then begin the difficult process of healing from physical and emotional injuries while addressing any property damage they sustained. This may include filing a personal injury lawsuit but will always begin by filing a claim with either the other driver’s insurance company or your own. Communicating with an insurance adjuster may seem straightforward — especially if you weren't at fault — but if you don’t handle the negotiations correctly, you could miss out on compensation that you rightly deserve.
To improve your chances of a fair settlement, there are some important things to know ahead of time. For help with this or any other aspect of your claim, contact us at Gama Law Firm LLC. We’re committed to helping people reach fair settlements that adequately cover their expenses. We proudly serve clients in and around Aurora, Denver, Parker, Centennial, and Castle Pines, Colorado.
Insurance Adjuster’s Role
An insurance adjuster’s job is to investigate the details of the accident and determine how much they’ll pay out in compensation. They’ll interview you and the other driver, inspect evidence, and do additional research to gain a complete picture of what happened. While an adjuster’s role is to settle on a fair dollar amount for the injured party, they are always trying to save their company money and close claims as quickly as possible.
Requests for a Statement
Very soon after an accident, a claims adjuster will contact you to discuss the details of the case. Remember, they are trying to settle as quickly as possible and move on to their next case. You do not have to provide a statement when they call, and there are very good reasons why you shouldn’t.
Why You Should Refuse
It can be as soon as two days after an accident that an adjuster will call wishing to speak about the car accident claim. And, depending on the severity of the crash, you may not have had enough time to thoroughly understand your medical needs or the extent of your property damage. If you give a statement too soon, you’re likely to give incomplete information and the adjuster can then use this against you to reduce your compensation. Furthermore, some adjusters will deliberately ask you contradictory questions during your statement to create inconsistency, calling into question your memory of the car accident.
What to Say if You Choose to Give a Statement
If you do give a statement, there are several things to keep in mind. First, you should ask for the statement to not be recorded. Once you’ve submitted a recorded statement, there is very little you can do to amend what you’ve said.
Don’t admit guilt when recounting the events of what happened — the portion of guilt each party holds will be up to the adjuster to determine. During your statement, the adjuster will ask you many questions intended to throw you off, and you don’t have to reply to questions you don’t know the answers to. Keep your answers brief and directed to the questions, and don’t volunteer information. Lastly, don’t agree to sign anything before you’ve had a personal injury attorney review it.
What Information Will They Ask Me to Provide?
An adjuster will want to ask lots of questions about the accident, but you aren’t obligated to provide answers to all of them. They will ask what you saw, who you spoke to, what you think caused the accident, and so on. However, you’ll only need to provide basic information. This could include your name, contact information, where you’re employed, and what type of work you do. You do not have to give them any details about your salary or schedule. You can give basic details of the accident, such as where and when it took place, the vehicles involved, the type of accident, and the names of any witnesses.
How Legal Counsel Can Help
Going back and forth with an insurance adjuster can be stressful, and you don’t need this added strain when trying to recover from an injury. In many cases, it can be helpful to hire legal counsel to handle the negotiations directly. From our office in Aurora, Colorado, we’re able to help with any aspect of your insurance settlement or personal injury claim. Give Gama Law Firm a call today to get started.