What You Should (and Should Not) Say to a Claims Adjuster
Shortly after an accident, you may be contacted by a claims adjuster from the insurance company. It is important to know that the adjuster works for the insurance company and not for you. The adjuster may use a number of tactics to get you to accept a quick settlement, downplay your injuries, or even put you at fault for the accident.
It is in your best interest to retain legal counsel immediately after an accident with injuries. A lawyer can help determine whether you are receiving a fair settlement and can represent you throughout the process.
At Coletrane & Messersmith, we provide dedicated advocacy for injury victims and their families. If you were injured in an accident, contact our office at (757) 530-5273 to schedule a free consultation.
If an insurance adjuster calls, you should always remain calm and follow these important tips:
1. Keep It Professional
While the entire process can be exasperating, the insurance adjuster may still play an important role in your case. When speaking with the adjuster always stay calm, polite, and professional. You do not want to say something out of frustration or anger that could negatively impact your claim. You are also not required to give out your personal information such as your work schedule or income level.
2. Stick to the Facts
You want to keep your conversation with the adjuster clear and straightforward. There is no need to go into extraneous detail about things that may be unrelated to the accident. The more information you give, the more likely that an adjuster can try to use it to deny your claim or put you at fault. It is not your job to determine liability.
3. Do Not Talk About Your Injuries
Injury victims often make one of two mistakes when talking to a claims adjuster. They either go into too much information about their injuries, pre-existing conditions, or other health issues or they say that they are not seriously injured. It is unlikely that in the days or even weeks after the accident you know the full extent of your injuries.
4. Get the Name of the Adjuster
You should take detailed notes any time you speak with an adjuster about your accident claim. Always ask for the person’s identification and write down the day and time that you speak with them.
5. Do Not Give Recorded Statements
You should not give a written or recorded statement without first discussing your case with an attorney. What you say can and will be used against you. A claims adjuster does not have the right to pressure you into making a statement.
6. Do Not Say Yes to a Settlement (Without Speaking to an Attorney)
Insurance claims adjusters are well-versed in trying to get injured parties to accept quick payouts. They use a number of high-pressure strategies and tactics to make you think your claim will not be successful.
You should resist accepting these early settlement offers as they rarely reflect the true value of your case. You should only accept an offer once an attorney has had the opportunity to review your claim.
Contact Our Office to Discuss Your Rights
If you were injured in an accident, contact our office at (757) 530-5273 to discuss your case with an attorney. All consultations are free of charge and without obligation to retain our services. There are no fees unless we win. Call now to speak with a member of our legal team.