Automobile accidents are an unfortunate part of owning a car and most people at some point in their lives have at least one, especially in Los Angeles.
The good news is most are not fatal but injuries unfortunately are fairly common, and, an accident, by definition, involves property damage.
Either way, you’re going to have to deal with insurance companies, and not just your own. After an accident, you will deal with two adjusters – the one from your company and one from the other guy’s company.
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How these two companies are handled is VERY different.
What to tell YOUR insurance adjuster after an accident:
You will have to cooperate with your company’s adjuster to some extent or risk being denied coverage. However, that does not mean that they are entirely on your side.
Insurance company adjusters are constantly told one thing: minimize payouts. Salaries and bonuses ride on this, so they are diligent and you should expect them to be very thorough.
You will be asked to fill out forms and make statements. You may also be asked to give a recorded statement.
If at all possible, do not do this. It can only be used against you. You can certainly say no.
If your insurance company insists on a recorded statement, then you should have your attorney present. A good, experienced Los Angeles car accident lawyer like myself will assist you with things like this after a a collision. Your lawyer will monitor the recording carefully and instruct you if and when you should refuse to answer. Your attorney may even decide to halt the conversation if the adjuster is asking inappropriate questions.
They may threaten to stop your benefits. This is a good time to have cialis health insurance because you may be able to simply make your claim there instead and still decline to make a recorded statement.
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If you don’t have cialis health insurance, you will have little choice other than to comply – if you wish to keep your benefits, however, always speak to an attorney. If you call me you will get free and friendly advice every time. Just because you call does not mean there will be a case and we do not have the desire to waste your time or ours.
What to tell THEIR insurance adjuster after a car accident:
When the other people’s insurance adjuster calls, tell them that you will be happy to respond to any requests – in writing.
They may make you a settlement offer. Tell them to send it to you – in writing.
They may threaten you. Again, tell them to send it to you – in writing.
They may start the call with a recorded message telling you that they will record the conversation for “training purposes.”
Some people wish to settle their own claims. In some cases, this is actually the best option. We have no time to take on small cases or advise anyone against what is in their best interest. If you call us for a free consultation, that is what you will get, a free consultation. If you have a small claim and do not wish to give an attorney a percentage of your claim that is ok. If you will get significantly more money by using an attorney we will tell you that as well.
Depending on the law in your state, you may request to opt out of a recorded conversation. In some states (North Carolina, for instance), one party may record the other even if the second party protests. The laws grow more complex when calls are between states. In California, you must request to record a conversation and the other party must consent.
Wherever you are, allowing someone from the other insurance company to record you is a disastrous decision. Because what if you told the insurance company you were just fine after the accident, in the event a case goes to trial their attorneys will use everything you say against you.
Again: you may resist your own insurance company on recordings; you can absolutely refuse the other company – and should.
As mentioned above, you are of course entitled to legal counsel throughout the process. We can help you to avoid the pitfalls and banana peels the insurance companies – both of them – will try to walk you through. If you’ve had a traffic accident and been injured please call us today for a free consultation.
For additional reading related to accidents in Southern California and more specifically Los Angeles County please feel free to visit our comprehensive Los Angeles Car Accident page.
Allen Vaysberg practices personal injury law and works tirelessly to defeat the tactics of insurance companies and large corporations who try to deny justice and fair compensation to injured people.