Most people who have been involved in a car accident will tell you the same thing. Dealing with insurance companies can be just as frustrating as trying to recover after an accident. During this time, you are in a vulnerable place. You are injured, in shock, and maybe even in the hospital. It is even worse when you do not have legal representation because you may be signing something that is not right. Below are some of the tricks you should watch out for after a car accident.
Pressuring You Into Accepting a Quick Settlement Offer
Insurance companies want to get over the claim as quickly as possible. They might try to pressure you into signing off on a settlement quickly. Note that you are not under any legal obligation to follow their timeline. If you have been injured, then take time to recover. Once you are in a better headspace, you can review the settlement they are offering and see if it is worth the damage suffered. Even better, let a car accident lawyer deal with the insurance company on your behalf. The attorney will analyze your case and advise you on the compensation you ought to get.
Pushing You to Give Them a Recorded Statement
Again, you are under no legal obligation to do this, and you should not do it outside of trying to be kind. Whatever goes into your recorded statement can be used against you. Sometimes you might say something innocently only to find the insurance company’s lawyer using it in the settlement negotiation. The first couple of days after an accident, you are vulnerable. You can say the wrong things. Plus, you have not had time to consult with a lawyer. That is why you should refuse to give a statement.
Saying That You Cannot Be Hurt if There Is No Property Damage
Another trick that insurance companies can use is arguing that if the car damage is not extensive, you should not be injured. That is simply not true. Just like someone can come out uninjured from a severe car crash, it is the same way someone can be injured in a car accident that does not look serious. The body is dynamic, and so are car crashes. A lot of factors can contribute to your injuries. That is why you ought to be thorough when choosing a car accident lawyer. An attorney will prove that your damages resulted from the accident.
Informing You That You Do Not Need a Lawyer
If an insurance adjuster starts telling you that you do not need an attorney as that is an unnecessary expense, do not fall for it. If the company is planning to give you a fair settlement, it should not be concerned with your decision to hire representation. In fact, there is a possibility that your compensation will be higher than what the adjuster is offering if you hire a lawyer.
Offering to Cover Out-Of-Pocket Expenses
At times, the insurance company may offer to cover your out-of-pocket expenses. This may seem like an appealing offer as they are taking some expenses from your hands. But if it means signing a release of the whole claim, do not accept it. There is a chance you are not getting full compensation for the damages. Agreeing to that quick settlement will cost you later. At this point, you have yet to fully understand how serious your injuries are. For instance, there is the risk of PTSD after a car accident which can be classified as emotional damage. You are also entitled to compensation after that. Always consult a lawyer before signing anything.
These tricks often work because people are not aware of their rights. But when you are informed, you make informed decisions and take the right steps towards being fairly compensated.