If you're the victim of a bad driver, it can come as a relief to find that they at least were insured. With an adequate insurance policy, you can expect to have your medical bills taken care of and to get you back on the road with your car fixed or replaced. While dealing with the after-effects of a car wreck can be extremely stressful, be sure that you don't allow yourself to get too complacent and take one phone call too many. Read on to learn more about the dangerous phone call that could put your entire personal injury claim in jeopardy.
Sure the callers seems very nice, but.....That caller is an employee of the at-fault driver's insurance carrier, and it is their job to reduce the amount they pay to you. Keep this in mind when you get a call; this insurance adjuster is not there to lend you support and sympathy. They may make promises about issuing quick checks for your damages, as long as you agree to give a recorded statement over the phone. You should take a deep breath and say "no", and here's why.
Understanding liability: There's no need to let your eyes glaze over when hearing this term, it's actually quite a simple concept. You can equate liability to fault, and many accidents are not as simple as they may first appear. In some cases, both drivers took actions that contributed to the cause or to the injuries. In these cases, both drivers (or sometimes many drivers) share liability. Shared liability can only mean one thing to you: a lesser amount of compensation.
What you say can hurt you: The insurance adjuster is an experienced interviewer, and they have several tricks up their sleeves. In some cases, the adjuster may ask you a "leading" question, and answering that question a certain way could damage your case. For example, the caller may say "So, I can see that your injuries were pretty bad from the impact; you must have been going about 50 miles an hour when you entered the intersection". Any wrong detail, any instance of agreeing with the interviewer and conflicting information provided could cause your liability to be used to compute and reduce your settlement amount.
Refusing to speak to the adjuster: You should understand that you are under absolutely no obligation to speak to the insurance adjuster for the other side. You may want to prepare your own statement with the help of your personal injury attorney to present to them, instead. Don't put your chances at a fair compensation package at risk, speak to a personal injury attorney like those at Cok Kinzler PLLP right away.