Anyone who has been in a car accident knows that outside of their family members and friends, the person who quickly seems to be most sympathetic to their plight may be the insurance adjuster who shows up to learn more about what happened.
They lend a sympathetic ear, seem very kind and eager to help. Since you’re relying on the financial compensation provided by your insurance company, you might be tempted to feel you’re in good hands, and all you need to do is describe in great detail what happened at the accident scene.
And that could be a terrible mistake that costs you dearly.
While insurance companies will make a great effort to seem like they truly care about your situation and only want you to get what you deserve, the truth is that insurance companies make big profits by denying or reducing as many claims as possible and minimizing their liability. No matter how innocent their actions seem, your view of that company will shift dramatically once they reject your claim. So let’s take a closer look at the tricks that insurance companies use to avoid paying the highest amount.
Why Should You Avoid Talking to Insurance Agents After an Accident
From the moment your accident happens, your insurance company will want you to believe they’re on your side and there to help. But they’re looking for you to accept the lowest possible offer. Before speaking with an insurance agent, it’s important to find an experienced personal injury attorney who will work to guarantee that you get the full compensation you deserve for your injuries and losses.
Here are some tried and true tricks used by the industry.
They Want You to Make a Recorded Statement
Under the guise of speeding up the claims process, insurance adjusters often pressure accident victims to make a written or recorded statement about what happened at the accident scene. While a fact-finding mission by the insurance company sounds reasonable, they may be looking for ways to get you to make potentially damaging statements that can be used to reduce the value of your claim or reject it altogether.
Quite simply, they’re going to use what you say against you to deny or reduce how much they offer. It’s a much wiser decision to have an attorney speak on your behalf.
The Insurance Company Asks About Pre-Existing Conditions
People often suffer injuries during a car accident that require medical attention and can lead to costly medical bills. Insurance adjusters, though, can be quick to request a review of your medical records to see if any of the injuries you’re suffering could be something that dates back to long before the accident. Insurance companies will want to suggest the pain you’re enduring is related to a pre-existing condition and not the car crash.
Making a Quick Lowball Offer
Sometimes an insurance adjuster will surprise the accident victim by quickly putting a settlement offer on the table. If that sounds generous on their part, don’t buy it. That first offer is almost always much lower than what they owe you, but they’re hoping you’re more willing to get money now rather than fight for the full amount. The job of the insurance companies is to keep as much of your money in their pockets, and that’s why they’re eager to get you to settle for a lowball offer.
Asking About Your Social Media Accounts
Today, many insurance adjusters will research your social media accounts. They’re hoping you’re going to comment on your accident on social media, and they can use those posts to suggest you have a degree of liability. The company might also want to see if you’re engaging in physical activities that suggest the extent of your injuries are not all that bad, such as videos or photos of you engaged in sports or having fun at a party.
Going through a serious car accident can be an emotionally and physically draining, even overwhelming, experience. But it’s still important to remain savvy at all times and avoid the tricks that can prevent you from getting full compensation. It can certainly seem tempting to trust the friendly and kind insurance adjuster and let them take the lead on resolving your case, but it’s still in your best interest to speak to an attorney first.
Experienced Louisiana Car Accident Lawyers Near You
Every moment wasted not contacting an attorney to help you with your car accident case is a potential dollar lost in your settlement, so it’s important to partner with a trusted attorney. In Louisiana, attorneys with E. Orum Young Law have decades of experience negotiating with insurers to reach fair settlements for their clients. E. Orum Young Law strives to handle all the complex legwork necessary to pursue a successful claim so you can focus on healing. We have more than 35 years of experience protecting Louisiana drivers and are ready to fight for you.