If you have recently been involved in a car accident, you may have also recently been contacted by an auto insurance company. They might even reach out with a friendly and caring demeanor, showing what seems to be genuine concern. While they may seem nice, always remember that they are a for-profit company whose goal is to make as much yearly profit as possible. This means that your best interests are not their priority, so don’t be surprised when they use tricky tactics to help diminish your claim and save their bottom line.
The most common tactic of an insurance company is quickly offering a lowball settlement to claimants. A lowball settlement is an offer that has been intentionally calculated at a significantly lower amount than what the claimant needs or deserves. Knowing that many car accident victims are at their most vulnerable financially after a crash, this deceptive tactic often works in the insurance company’s favor.
Insurance companies love this tactic because it often works, and when you sign a settlement agreement, no matter the amount, your claim closes, and it is difficult and often impossible, to reopen. You should always consult with an attorney before accepting any settlement. Insurance companies will also often tell you that you only have a few days to respond to their offer, but this is also often untrue. Do your due diligence and consult an experienced car accident attorney first.
Following a car accident, you normally do not owe and are not required to give a recorded statement to anyone else’s insurance company. Insurance representatives carefully craft their messaging to make it seem as though you are required to submit a recorded statement. Don’t fall for it.
Shortly after an accident, you may receive a call asking you to provide a recorded statement. They will approach you with a very professional request that seems legitimate to get you to make a statement that can later be used against you. They may use this information to lower your settlement offer or to misconstrue your words as an admission of guilt. Instead, you should direct all insurance companies to speak to your attorney for any communications, statements, or otherwise.
In law, there are deadlines and statutes of limitation that claimants and insurers must follow. From the time it takes to acknowledge a claim to the date it is accepted or denied, and the settlement date, adhering to these deadlines is important.
Insurance companies often drag their feet and may wait until the last minute to take action on each deadline. This helps discourage the claimant, as they continue to have out-of-pocket medical expenses. Many claimants drop their claim entirely during this process or go back to the lowball negotiation table with the insurance company. An experienced attorney can monitor your claim, reassure you, and keep the insurance company accountable if deadlines are missed.
If you or someone you know has suffered personal injury in an accident, we can help. Contact Saladino & Schaaf today or call us at 270-444-0406 (Paducah, KY) or 270-753-1529 (Murray, KY) to schedule a free case review. You may be entitled to a significant settlement for your injuries, but you must act timely as there are time limits on legal action.
Saladino & Schaaf, PLLC is dedicated to providing high quality, aggressive legal representation to victims of personal injury and wrongful death. Since 1984, this firm and its predecessors have had one goal in mind – to help the victims of personal injury put the pieces of their lives back together.
Saladino & Schaaf, PLLC is a Personal Injury Law Firm with offices in Paducah, KY and Murray, KY. We serve clients throughout Kentucky and Illinois.
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