Involvement in a car accident can be a devastating experience for you and your family. The injuries resulting from these accidents are likely to take a toll on the physical, emotional, and financial aspects of your life. One of the main concerns you could have after the accident is recovering compensation for the injuries. Since most car accidents that occur on the roads in Las Vegas result from negligence, the at-fault party's insurance company will be responsible for compensating you.
Unfortunately, most defendants are reluctant to accept fault for the accident. Therefore, you will need to either bring a claim with the insurance company or file a lawsuit to recover compensation. Either way, you will need to undergo the stressful process of negotiating with the auto insurance adjusters. Insurance companies do not have your best interests at heart and will stop at nothing but pay you as little as possible. Therefore, seeking legal guidance when dealing with insurance companies is crucial.
At Las Vegas Car Accident Attorney Law Firm, we dedicate our legal expertise and time to defend your rights against insurance adjusters and help you obtain a failed compensation. We serve clients requiring legal guidance in Las Vegas, NV.
Who is an Insurance Adjuster?
If you are injured in an accident in Las Vegas, you will likely be contacted by the other party's insurance company. An insurance adjuster represents the insurance company and is responsible for processing your claim. Insurance adjusters are trained to investigate the accident, determine liability, calculate the value of your claim and negotiate the settlement. The insurance company pays the adjusters to protect their interests.
Whether an insurance adjuster is private or public, their role does not ensure your well-being. After the accident, the insurance adjuster could contact you and interview you regarding the accident. Often the adjusters use the information you provide to determine the amount you deserve as compensation. In most cases, insurance companies will want to settle the claim quickly and pay you as little as possible.
With the information you offer and the results of their investigation, the insurance adjuster determines the fault for the accident and assesses your damages. What you say to an insurance adjuster can make or destroy your case and your chances of compensation. When dealing with the insurance adjusters, it is important to understand that their offer is not final. You have a right to negotiate for a higher settlement. If you are not satisfied with the amount they are willing to pay, you can file a personal injury lawsuit with the court.
How Does the Insurance Adjuster Value my Claim?
When you submit a claim with the insurance company, it will undergo evaluation. The insurance adjust who contacts you shortly after the accident is responsible for evaluating the claim. After the assessment, the adjuster will recommend the right course of action to the insurance companies. Understanding what the insurance adjuster looks for during the evaluation of your claim will help you obtain a fair settlement:
Before accepting or rejecting your claim, the insurance adjuster will request to review the police reports on your accident. When you call the police to an accident scene, they will write a report based on their observations and the information of the parties involved in the accident. Since most insurance adjusters know nothing about the cases they handle, the police report will provide more details about the accident.
An insurance adjuster will go through your medical records to determine whether you received treatment for the injuries related to the accident. Medical records are often a significant piece of evidence in an accident claim. After the accident, it is important always to seek medical care. Even when you do not feel injured, undergoing a medical checkup could help detect any internal injuries. If you did not seek medical care, the insurance adjuster could use this to argue that you were not injured.
Your Contribution to the Accident
So rimes, accidents may be more than one person's faulty. You might be partially liable for an accident where you were injured. The state of Nevada operates on comparative negligence. Comparative negligence portions the liability for the accident based on fault. When assessing your claim, the insurance adjuster may try to place some blame for the accident on you and can use this to diminish the value of your claim.
If the insurance company contacts you after an accident, you need to avoid accepting any fault for the accident. If you are partially liable for the accident, you need to leave it to them to find the evidence and prove this fact. However, it is important to understand that being partially liable for an accident does not stop you from recovering compensation for your injuries.
Dealing with the Insurance Adjusters during the Claim Process
Insurance adjusters are always ready to argue against your damages and may begin to discuss a possible settlement even before you present a claim. When the insurance adjuster contacts you, you need to be prepared. Before you enter the negotiations for your claim, be sure to have all the necessary evidence to support the claim. Before making an official claim, you should refrain from disclosing the details of the accident to the insurance adjusters.
Being prepared for your claim is a way to ensure that you are not overwhelmed with the facts and figures that the insurance company will throw around. With the help of a competent personal injury attorney, you can argue the reasoning behind your request for a particular amount of compensation. The following are some of the tips you can use when dealing with insurance adjusters after an accident in Las Vegas:
Gather Relevant Evidence
Vehicle insurance companies know that the responsibility to find evidence in a car accident claim lies on the person seeking compensation. If you want to settle your claim out of court, your formal claim should be accompanied by the relevant evidence, including:
- Evidence to establish liability for the accident. Whether you settle your claim in court or with the insurance provider, you shoulder the burden of proving that the other party was liable for your accident. In this case, you will need evidence supporting your version of the accident's events. Evidence comes in all forms, including photos, videos, and witness testimonies. Even an accident that seems minor could have life-changing effects. Therefore, ensure that you have the facts straight before you move into negotiations with the insurance company.
- Evidence of damages. Compensation after a car accident is aimed at helping you recover from the injuries and losses resulting from the crash. When dealing with the insurance adjusters, you should ensure you have the relevant evidence to establish the damages you suffered from the accident. Damages from a car accident include medical expenses, pain, suffering, lost wages, and lost future earning capacity. With the help of your attorney, you can document the nature of your injuries and present them to the insurance company.
- Additional evidence. If you decide to file a personal injury lawsuit, you can obtain information from the fault parties through a car accident interrogatory. Also, you can obtain useful information through a deposition which is given and recorded by a court reporter. If you are injured in a car accident, gathering the relevant evidence is one of the ways through which you can have the upper hand over the insurance adjusters in your car accident claim.
Start Negotiations High
Insurance companies use their adjusters to downplay your claim and offer a settlement lower than what you derive. The first figure you quote in your demand will be up for negotiations, and your claim's value will move downwards from there. Therefore, to begin with, it would be wise to be a higher figure than what you need. This ensures that after the negotiations, you receive amount enough to cover your losses.
Take your Time
Claim adjusters deal with a high volume of cases. Therefore, they want to close your case quickly and move to the next. This should not be the case for you. Recovering from the injuries and losses resulting from a car accident could take a toll on your finances. Therefore, you do not need to rusk through the claim.
It would be wise to take your time with the settlement of the claim. This allows you time to gather more evidence to support your demands. For example, if you suffer injuries from the accident, an early settlement may not factor in ongoing and future treatment expenses. By waiting it out, you will ensure to have a clear picture of the extent of your injuries and the amount you are likely to spend on treatment.
Also, waiting to settle the claim will give you a clear picture of how the accident injuries will affect your life and ability to work. With this knowledge, you can seek appropriate compensation for your losses. Consulting a car accident attorney is a great way to find reasonable time in negotiations.
Don't Accept a Low Settlement
When you accept a settlement from an insurance company, you do not have a right to file a claim seeking compensation for the particular accident. Therefore, when you accept a low settlement, you may be left with the burden to shoulder some of the financial losses resulting from the accident. If the amount offered by the insurance company is not enough to cover your damages, you should not accept the settlement.
If your case is not settled with the insurance company, you can file a lawsuit against the party's liability for the accident. When you threaten to file a lawsuit, the insurance company may be inspired to offer you more money. Otherwise, your case will need to go to court, and the judge will determine the amount you deserve.
Keep Track of your Communication with Insurance Adjusters
One of the most useful tactics you can adopt to hold the insurance company accountable during a car accident claim process is tracking all your communication with their adjusters. Every time you receive a call from the insurance company, you need to record ye adjuster's name, the company's name, and their contact information.
Also, it will be useful to have all details of your conversations. One of the ways through which you can outsmart insurance adjusters is to keep all your records in one place. If the adjuster tries to overwhelm you with information, having all your records together will help you reference. This will help establish a timeline of the communications if your claim fails to resolve out of court and you are forced to file a legal claim in court.
What to Avoid When Dealing with Insurance Adjusters after a Car Accident in Las Vegas
If you are involved in a car accident, you cannot escape the insurance adjusters. The insurance company will contact you even before you think of claiming compensation or filing for a lawsuit. Most insurance adjusters want to speak to you immediately after the accident as you are dealing with the trauma from the accident. This can help them have the upper hand in the case and offer as little settlement as possible.
When dealing with insurance companies and their adjusters, you should be very careful about what you say to them. The information you present can be misinterpreted and used to deny you your rightful compensation. The following are some of the things you should avoid:
1) Don't Give your Opinion on the accident
Most insurance adjusters do not have the time to investigate the details of the accident and will rely on you to provide information. When an insurance adjuster contacts you, you should politely decline to answer questions whose facts you do not know. Also, avoid giving your opinion on the events if you cannot provide relevant evidence to ascertain your facts.
Speculative statements cannot be backed up with evidence. Therefore, the adjuster can use these statements to claim that you changed your story and, in return, hurt your chances of recovering compensation. Any answers you provide to the adjuster's questions should be brief and as accurate as possible.
2) Avoid Admitting Fault for the Accident
It would be wise to avoid apologetic language or admitting fault for the accident during your conversations with insurance adjusters. Sometimes, you may be tempted to feel sorry for individuals who suffered more serious injuries from the accident and apologize. However, such a move could be detrimental to your claim. Even when you feel that you played a part in the accident, you should leave it to the court to determine your liability.
The job of an insurance adjuster is to investigate your case and look for a means to absolve the insurance company of fault. Therefore, apologizing could be taken to admit responsibility for the accident, and you could be the one having to compensate other victims for their injuries.
3) Do Not Provide Any Information About your Injuries
Most insurance adjusters contact you even before you reach the hospital. In your conversation, they could ask you about the nature and extent of your injuries. Although this may seem like a routine question, you are not obliged to answer. Many injuries result from a car accident. Some injuries are easily visible, while others are internal and cannot be detected until you seek medical care.
It would be best if you declined to comment about your injuries until you have received a medical check and the doctor has determined the full extent of the injuries. Although it can be tempting to give details about your injuries right away, it would be wise to wait for the effects of the accidents to wear off, and a physician can provide you with the correct details. Additionally, you can request the insurance adjuster to wait for you to draft a formal claim.
4) Avoid Recording a Statement
After a car accident in Las Vegas, you are not obligated to provide a written statement to the insurance adjusters. Most insurance companies will ask for the statement hoping that you will do so. A written statement can be used to catch you changing your story about the accident. Declining to give the statement will protect you from the adjusters using your statement to deny your claim in the future.
5) Don't admit that you do not have an Attorney.
When you speak with an insurance adjuster after a car accident, you should avoid admitting you did not have an attorney. When the insurance company realizes that you lack legal representation, they can take advantage of this fact to offer a lower settlement than what you deserve.
6) Do Not Provide your Details to the Insurance Adjuster
Insurance adjusters are trained to use any information you provide to eliminate the insurance company's liability to your car accident claim. Therefore, when an adjuster contacts you, you should refrain from giving information about your lifestyle, work, income, or schedules.
7) Don't Accept the First Settlement.
Dealing with the effects of a car accident is very challenging. Unfortunately, the role of the insurance adjuster is to settle the claim as soon as possible and with little liability to the insurance company. The initial settlement offered by the insurance company is likely to be lower than what you deserve for your injuries and losses. Therefore, you should not jump to take the offer without negotiations. With the guidance of a competent personal injury attorney, you can be able to negotiate a better settlement.
Hiring Legal Representation when Dealing with Insurance Adjusters
After a car accident in Las Vegas, you will have to deal with insurance adjusters from your insurance company and the other party involved in the accident. Your insurance company expects you to notify them of the accident and provide all the details. Whether you are speaking with your insurance provider of the other party's, you need to understand that their friendly tone is a tactic to make you comfortable and reveal the accident details.
The insurance company will contact you immediately after they learn about the accident. After the accident, it would be wise to focus on healing the emotional and physical trauma resulting from the accident. You can leave the issue of negotiating with insurance adjusters to your car accident attorney. Insurance adjusters often do not want you to hire an attorney. This will allow them to use their knowledge to limit your payout.
Regardless of your injuries, you control the amount you are likely to receive from the insurance company. Navigating your claim with the guidance of a knowledgeable attorney ensures that you know your rights and can focus on the bigger picture in your case.
Insurance adjusters are not your friends and could lie to you with encouragement from the insurance company. The insurance adjuster can use the information you provide in your conversations to reduce or deny your claim. Fortunately, your attorney understands how to calculate your damages and will ensure that you recover the rightful compensation.
Find a Competent Las Vegas Car Accident Attorney Near Me
Suffering an injury in a car accident caused by another person's negligence is very stressful, and dealing with the insurance adjusters should not add to your stress. After an accident, the at-fault driver's insurance company is likely to contact you with an offer for settlement. Insurance companies and their adjusters are not focused on your interests, and their main goal is to downplay your claim and offer a low settlement.
Knowing how to handle the insurance adjusters is a great step towards ensuring that you recover the compensation you deserve for your injuries. The moments following involvement in a car accident can be very challenging. Therefore, enlisting the help of a skilled car accident attorney could be a wise decision for your case. At Las Vegas Car Accident Attorney Law Firm, we will handle all your claim negotiations with the insurance adjusters to ensure that you recover your rightful compensation. If you seek legal guidance and representation in Las Vegas, CA, you will need us in your corner. Call us today at 702-576-0010 and allow us to guide you through your claim.