How to Deal With the Insurance Company After a Car Accident
Posted in Car Accident on October 20, 2021
Under Texas law, negligent drivers are responsible for paying for their victims’ damages after a car accident. To secure compensation after a collision, you can file a lawsuit or an insurance claim against the at-fault motorist. Most car accident cases begin in the insurance stage before progressing to a lawsuit if necessary.
If you plan on filing an insurance claim, it is important to approach discussions with an insurance company carefully and with caution. The following tips can help you navigate conversions with the insurance company after a Texas car accident.
Remember the Insurance Company Has Different Goals
When filing an insurance claim, you likely have one goal in mind: to recover maximum compensation to pay for all of your losses following the collision. However, the insurance company’s motivation is to protect its best interests and paying a large settlement to each and every claimant harms the company’s bottom line.
While you are engaging with insurance representatives, remember that your goals differ from the company’s. Although the representative may claim to have your best interests in mind, it is best to hire a car accident lawyer who can advocate for your maximum recovery during each stage of your case.
Avoid Giving an Early Statement
Soon after your accident, a representative from the at-fault driver’s insurance company may contact you and ask for a statement. He or she may claim that providing a statement would help you recover compensation faster and settle your case sooner. However, you should not speak to the insurance company before speaking to an attorney.
At this stage in your case, you may not have a full understanding of the extent of your injuries and damages. You may not know exactly how the accident occurred. If you provide an early statement, you may accidentally say something incorrect—which can harm your claim later on.
If you learn new information that changes your story, the insurance company may use discrepancies between your statements as evidence against you. The representative may believe you are untruthful and deny or reduce your claim. As a result, you will not be able to recover compensation for your damages, like the need for long-term care after an injury.
Before speaking to the insurance company, always contact your car accident lawyer for guidance. Your attorney will handle these discussions on your behalf and help you navigate a statement if you have to provide one. He or she likely advise you to wait until you reach maximum medical improvement (MMI) so that you have a clearer understanding of your injuries and damages.
Do Not Accept the First Settlement
After filing your claim, the insurance company will likely respond with a settlement offer. You may be tempted to accept this offer so that you can resolve your claim and pay for immediate expenses, like medical care and vehicle repairs. However, this initial settlement is rarely sufficient to meet your needs.
Before accepting any settlement, always ask your attorney to review it. Your lawyer will help you calculate your estimated damages and can evaluate the offer against your needs. If the amount is insufficient, he or she can negotiate with the company for a higher amount.
If you plan on filing an insurance claim after a collision, it is important to seek the help of a McAllen car accident lawyer as soon as possible. After receiving medical attention for your injuries, contact an attorney to discuss your legal options.