Auto Accidents: Dealing With The Insurance Company

When an auto accident occurs and a driver is injured due to the fault of another driver, the injured person typically files a claim with the other party's insurance company to obtain compensation. Dealing with an insurance company can be a tricky business as the insurer will naturally want to keep your payment to a minimum. This article examines two key points regarding this important legal and financial topic.

 First Offer

Sometime after you file a claim with the other driver's insurance company they will most likely send you a settlement offer. Legal experts recommend that you reject any first offer from an insurer. The offer is almost certainly a lowball offer that does not represent the true value of your claim. Don't be concerned if the insurer says that it's their final offer as this is almost never true. 

A crucial point to keep in mind is that when you agree to a settlement, you also agree to release the insurance company from further liability, which means you can't pursue any legal action against them. So, if you agree to a quick settlement and sign a release, you have no further legal recourse if you later determine that your medical bills are going to be much larger than you anticipated. 

Wait until you understand the actual amount of your medical bills and how much income you will lose due to injuries before you agree to anything. Another key point is to work with an experienced auto accident lawyer who will make sure any offer you accept is fair.

Medical Records

The other party's insurer might contact you after the accident and ask you to allow them to review all of your medical records. Auto accident lawyers strongly advise against doing this. When insurers look at your medical records, they are usually hoping to find something in your medical history that they can use against. For example, if you were ever treated for an injury in the past that is similar to your injuries that occurred in the accident, they will say your injuries were pre-existing and they are not liable for your medical bills.

You will almost certainly have to let the insurer examine some of your medical records as the case moves forward, but let your lawyer determine which part of the records are relevant to the case.

Dealing with another driver's insurance company after a car crash is a complicated process with many chances for the average person to make a poor decision. To learn more, consult with an auto accident attorney