In the days following a car accident you will likely be bombarded with constant phone calls from an insurance adjuster or another representative of the other person involved in the accident. It’s important that before you speak with these people you first understand how to handle an insurance adjuster after an accident. We’ll prepare you for what you should say (and what you shouldn’t) say during your first post-accident phone call with a representative of the other party—especially if you think that party is at fault for the accident and there’s a chance that you will be eligible for compensation.
What Does An Insurance Adjuster Do?
If this is your first accident, you’ll probably be asking yourself, what does an insurance claims adjuster actually do? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, insurance adjusters “inspect property damage or personal injury claims to determine how much the insurance company should pay for the loss.” Their most common duties include investigating accidents and claims, determining who was at fault for the accident, evaluating insurance policies, determining the claim cost, negotiating settlements, authorizing payments, and more. When the negligent motorist’s insurance company is notified after an accident, an insurance adjuster will be quickly assigned to the claim. After a claim has been filed, a claim number will be given. Shortly afterward, they will be contacted by the insurance adjusters handling the claim.
Tips On Dealing With An Insurance Adjuster After An Accident
Most people have no idea how to handle an insurance adjuster after an accident, especially if it’s their first time doing so. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of four crucial tips to remember when engaging in talks with an insurance adjuster. Although these tips can be effective, it’s still always a good idea to speak with a New Mexico car accident lawyer first to make sure that you’re protected and have the best chance for success.
Identify Your Adjuster And Take Notes
If you do talk with an insurance adjuster, make sure that you document their information. Pertinent information includes their name, phone number, and the insurance company they are working for. It’s also important to note that when you do speak with an adjuster, that you make sure to take notes of all significant correspondence. All of this information can be very useful later down the road for your personal injury claim.
Only Provide The Necessary Facts
If you decide to speak with an insurance adjuster, make sure that you only provide the needed details of what happened in the accident. No other details are required or beneficial to your claim. In fact, sometimes providing too much detail offers flexibility for the adjuster to manipulate your statement to minimize your claim. We’ve seen this happen time and time again where an innocent victim of an accident attempts to minimize or help the other party by giving an in-depth report of the accident. The more information an insurance adjuster is given, the more they have to work with to potentially reduce your claim.
Do Not Agree To Recorded Statements
You are not legally required to give a recorded statement to the at-fault driver’s insurance company after a car accident, even if the adjuster encourages you to do so. At Garcia Legal, we strongly recommend that you consider your options before doing so. It’s difficult to tell the same story the same way over time, no matter how important it is. The smallest detail can have a major impact on your case, especially if that minor detail is on the record. If your case winds up in litigation, you will be deposed.
Consult With A Personal Injury Attorney
It’s in your best interest to delay providing any statement to an insurance adjuster until after you have hired a personal injury lawyer to represent you and have had an opportunity to consult with them. After you have hired a lawyer, they can take care of the interactions with your adjuster and the legal actions that follow. A skilled personal injury attorney will have the experience needed to negotiate with adjusters and maximize your claim entirely.
Speak With A New Mexico Personal Injury Attorney Today
Going to trial is not the only reason to hire a New Mexico personal injury. Your attorney can review evidence, accident reports, medical records, and more to give you a comprehensive and accurate estimate of your case’s value. Next, your attorney can take over communications with the insurance adjuster on your behalf so you can ensure the protection of your rights and that your claim is in capable hands. Working with a personal injury attorney can give you all the information you need to properly deal with an insurance adjuster after an accident and achieve a fair settlement.