Why You Should Avoid Talking to Insurance Adjusters after a Crash

car accident injury reprecussions

When we buy auto insurance, we expect the support and compassion we thought we paid to receive. Unfortunately, when experience a car crash, we quickly learn the auto insurance industry doesn’t look out for our best interests, but their own instead. They deny our claims or minimize the damage suffered. This is frustrating because they charge expensive premiums for their services.

Insurance companies get away with this behavior through the use of claims adjusters. These are negotiators specially trained to minimize the cost of a claim as much as possible. Their end goal is to save the insurance company money. Adjusters do their best to cajole you into hurting the validity of your claim by getting you to say or do things you shouldn’t admit to or deny. This type of tactic saves their company millions of dollars every year in denied accident claims while causing their injured policyholders to financially and physically suffer. It’s essential to protect your interests and get a car accident attorney to deal with the insurance company on your behalf.

Tips for Speaking with Insurance Adjusters

After an accident, you will likely receive a call from an insurance adjuster about what occurred. Use caution when talking to them without a lawyer and do your best to not volunteer information by only answering questions with minimal details. If possible, just respond yes or no to every question, and don’t feel pressured to lie or make up answers to satisfy their curiosity. When in doubt about how to answer a question, simply say, “I don’t remember.” It’s better to not have an answer than jeopardize your claim.

Some other things you should never say to an adjuster without a lawyer present are:

  • Admission of fault. If you take any blame in your accident, you can compromise any future settlements. Avoid saying you are sorry for anything and don’t make statements about responsibility.
  • Avoid giving information about your injuries. Any injuries you have suffered should remain between you, your lawyer and healthcare professional.
  • Ignore the adjuster’s urgent attitude. It’s not uncommon for claims adjusters to act like there is a hurry to get your claim taken care of or an unspoken deadline to meet. Don’t let them hurry you.
  • Keep your opinions to yourself. It’s easy to speculate who is at fault, but that isn’t your job, and you shouldn’t share your thoughts about the accident.
  • Avoid lying at all costs. Keep your answers truthful and short. Any response that is not truthful will ruin your case and call your motives into question.
  • You don’t have to give them your social security number. While it may seem like it is a necessary step in the claim process, sharing this information is not required or mandatory. Insurance companies can look up your history and use it against you by using your number.
  • Pre-existing injuries are off limits. Any medical conditions or injuries you suffered before this accident have no relevance in your current claim. Discussing these gives the insurance company more reasons to dismiss your injury claim.
  • Leave your family out of it. If an adjuster asks for additional contact numbers or references from family and friends, don’t do it. These aren’t necessary for your claim’s processing.
  • Say no to recorded phone calls. Unless you have an attorney that advised you to do so, do not allow yourself to be recorded when speaking to adjusters. In some cases you may need to be recorded but speak to a lawyer first.
  • Don’t minimize how much pain you are in. If asked how you are feeling, don’t say you feel fine or okay. Saying so out of habit won’t matter to the insurance adjuster, and they can use this statement when you claim pain and suffering damages.
  • Avoid being overly friendly. One way claim adjusters get your guard down is to make small talk. It’s okay to be polite, but don’t be chatty. You might say something you shouldn’t, and they will use it against you.

As you can see, speaking to an adjuster can have a considerable impact on your claim’s success. For this reason, one should avoid speaking to them until consulting with an attorney about your rights and options.

Typical Tactics Insurance Adjusters Use

Besides baiting you for information that can hurt your claim over the phone, insurance adjusters may resort to other tactics to compromise your claim. These tactics involve every aspect of your case. From telling you what garage to use for car repairs to specifying what doctor to visit for medical care, if you speak to an insurance adjuster, you should know there are certain tricks they might use to get you to compromise your case.

Some of the most common tricks are:

  • Suggesting a preferred mechanic or body shop. No matter how the insurance adjuster says it, you are not required to take your damaged vehicle to their preferred shop. According to state law, insurance companies must deal with any chosen body shop for the cost of the repairs made.
  • Assuring you that an attorney isn’t necessary. Insurance adjusters prefer not having attorneys involved. They know attorneys will vigorously protect their clients’ rights and aggressively fight for compensation for a claim.
  • Referring you to use their preferred doctors. Some insurance companies have agreements with certain doctors offices when sending accident victims for care. The doctor will agree to keep the costs low, and this risks you not receiving the appropriate long-term care you deserve.
  • Claiming a recorded statement is mandatory. This claim is untrue, and you are not required to give a statement about your accident to the insurance adjuster.
  • Insisting on a statement about the accident. The purpose of insisting on a statement is so you might say something to hurt your claim. Having a personal injury attorney to represent you in the days following an accident will prevent insurance companies from taking advantage of you.
  • Pushing you to sign general release forms. General releases absolve the insurance company from any further claims against it. Signing is a big mistake as it waives your rights to compensation for things like rental vehicles, medical bills, and other claims. Never sign anything until you have spoken to an attorney.
  • Accepting a settlement before completing treatment. When you agree to a settlement early, you may discover you are still suffering from injuries months or even years, later. This leaves you with almost no recourse and limits what damages you get paid out.

Hire a Seasoned Car Accident Lawyer

It’s easy to see why an insurance adjuster does not look out for your best interests. This makes it necessary to hire an Orlando car accident lawyer to deal with their high-pressure tactics when pursuing a damage or injury claim. Relying on a lawyer to represent you can put a stop to some of these practices that victims of needed compensation.

The Umansky Law Firm has the answers you need and provides knowledgeable guidance and representation for your accident case. We make it our top priority to help the injured and not let the insurance companies take advantage of our clients. Our firm has over 100 years of combined experience and is successful in winning compensation. Contact us today at (407) 228-3838 to begin your free case evaluation to determine what kind of an accident claim you need to pursue.