Car accidents are overwhelming and can cause a lot of financial burdens and emotional stress. Right after a car crash, your or the at-fault party’s car insurance company will step up and try contacting you. However, it is important to note that insurance companies are no friends, and your case might even get complicated afterward.
So, how can you avoid such complications? First, you might like to explain the incident bit by bit. But that can go way too wrong for your case. Obviously, do not ever lie to your insurer, but accident victims should beware that their statements can have later consequences. This blog shares some guidelines and tips for talking to your insurers after a car accident.
What Should You Do If Your Insurance Company Calls?
Jacoby & Meyers car accident lawyers advise that “before you will have the chance to consult your lawyer, a representative from your insurance company or the at-fault insurance company may try to contact you. Be as honest as you can, but refrain from going into details”. You might supply them with:
- Details of you and the passengers involved in the crash
- The accidents’ time, venue, and other details, like weather
- The brands and models of the accident vehicles
- Remember, you should try not to sign anything, and don’t give them access to your medical records. Always hint to them that you will only give a written statement and that no other information will be given without a consultation with your lawyer.
Do not volunteer to give extra information
After a car accident, once you get a call from your insurance company, it is best advised to remain cautious and not go into too much detail. So, what should you really discuss with them?
Yes, undoubtedly, honesty is the key. Speaking lies early in your case might prove a problem later. If you are caught lying by the insurers, they might raise your claim rate strikingly. Go honest with them but do answer only what you are asked. Avoid volunteering to give information from your side.
Also, do not speak much in numbers and specific records. Instead, give them estimates; for example- if you can’t exactly recall your driving speed when the accident happened, give them a rough estimate instead of specifically telling them it was 100 km/hr.
Avoid admitting fault
Your insurance company will ask you- “What according to you caused the accident?” If you suddenly urge to speak, “I’m sorry. I think it was my fault because…”. It’s an end to your case. Admitting fault is one of the most common mistakes made by car accident victims. The law enforcement personnel, the other party’s insurers, and your insurance company must determine who was at fault. It’s best to leave the decisions to the authorities. Accepting blame can lead to a claim rate hike or a lowball settlement offer. Alternatively, also do not put the blame on the other driver.
Get your medical documents ready
The first thing to prove for a car accident claim is to prove your injuries. Start by visiting a doctor immediately after your car accident. Any delay can have future repercussions, and your insurers might try to say that you are doing completely well. Additionally, get all the medical bills and records documented. You can ask for a decent amount from your insurance based on well-documented medical records.
Deny if the insurers ask you to sign or record anything
Insurance representatives may ask you for permission to record the phone conversation. Do not say – Sure, you can record me’. You have the right to say ‘NO’ and should not agree to the recording. You can also hang on the call in case you observe something suspicious. Also, avoid signing to anything. You should hire a lawyer for your representation instead and ask them to cover all the paperwork the insurer mails or send you.
Your car accident lawyer can prepare a better roadmap for you and help you receive the right amount from the insurance companies.