When you have been injured in a car crash, it can be difficult enough going through the rehab and recovery of those injuries while also dealing with the pain they cause. Add the stress and worry of mounting medical bills, lost wages, and other missed commitments because those injuries prohibit you from being able to do the things you were able to before the accident, and the entire situation may feel just too overwhelming. The last thing a car accident victim needs to deal with at a time like this is the insurance claims process. This is where having a seasoned Virginia Beach personal injury attorney advocating for you allows you to focus on healing and not fighting with the insurance company.
The Insurance Claim Process
After an accident, a claim needs to be filed with the insurance company of the at-fault driver. Typically, within a day of filing that claim, an insurance company claims adjuster will contact you to discuss the details of the accident. It is critical to remember this fact before you speak to anyone: Insurance companies are in business for profit. When they have to pay out for accident damages, they are losing money. Therefore, they will do whatever they can to minimize their loss while also minimizing an accident victim’s damage amount.
When you do speak with a claim’s adjuster, it is also important to follow these steps:
- The adjuster will tell you that he or she is required to record the statement. That is not a true statement. In the majority of cases, there is no requirement to have a recorded statement in order to pay on an accident claim. However, a recorded statement can be used against you. Therefore, do not give a recorded statement or sign any statement without the assistance of your Virginia car accident attorney.
- When speaking with the claims adjuster, they may tell you that they are only collecting information and it is not necessary for you to have legal representation. That is not true. Any information you provide them and anything you say becomes part of your case record. Never speak with the adjuster without letting your attorney know.
- During the interview, or anytime you speak with the insurance company, just answer with the facts and if you don’t know the answer, say you don’t know. Never apologize for the accident. The insurance company could use that against you, claiming you admitted guilt for the accident.
- Never agree to any settlement without speaking to your attorney, even if pressured by the insurance company that it is their final offer and or is a stringent time limit on it. And you should never consider any settlement offer until there has been a final medical determination of the extent of your injuries.
- All car insurance claims, whether they occur in Virginia, or another state, have a statute of limitations within which the claim must be filed or it will be forever barred. If a year or more has gone by since your claim arose, especially, consult with a Virginia car accident attorney about what time frame applies to your particular injury case.
Let a Virginia Car Accident Attorney Fight for You
If you have been injured in a car accident, contact a skilled Virginia personal injury attorney who will make sure the insurance company pays you the compensation you deserve for the injuries you have suffered. Our Va. car crash firm has successfully represented many accident victims and we always aggressively defend against any tricks or maneuvers the insurance companies attempt to use against our clients.