Five Insurance Company Tricks After a Virginia Car Wreck with Injuries
If you have been hurt in a car wreck one of the first things you may do is call your insurance company. You may have previously dealt with the insurer after a fender bender. You trust them.
One of the first things you should realize is you should not trust the insurance company in an injury case. These wrecks are not the same as fender benders.
If you have only suffered a minor sprain, it may not be worth hiring a personal injury lawyer. For any moderate or serious injury, we contend it certainly is.
Unlike a personal injury lawyer, an insurance company wants to pay you as little as they can. The insurance agent will do whatever they can do to get away with paying an injured person the minimal amount necessary to get that release.
They will lowball you and treat you poorly even if it’s your own insurance company that you’re dealing with. They will usually be impeccably polite and friendly and you may think they are acting in your interests.
At the end of the day, the insurance company doesn’t care that you are a GEICO, a Nationwide or a Progressive customer even if the at-fault driver who injured you also has the same insurance. You are merely a number to them. It does not matter how long you have paid in to your policy.
Five Insurance Company Tricks After a Wreck
You should beware of an insurance company that keeps delaying your claim. In Virginia, you have two years to file a claim under the Statute of Limitations. The insurance company may drag its heels and then offer you a low settlement when you have no time left to hire an injury lawyer.
If the injured person fails to take appropriate action within the two-year limitation they have effectively waived their right to make a claim for their injuries.
2 Asking for a Recorded Statement
The insurance company may seek a statement in which you incriminate yourself, admit blame or hurt your case in some other way, impacting the size of your claim. You should avoid giving a recorded statement. Ideally, hire a lawyer, refuse to give a statement and say the attorney is handling your case.
3 Disregarding Your Medical Expenses
Insurance adjusters often “disregard” or “disallow” a portion of your medical expenses incurred after a wreck. They may claim the treatment you received was excessive or there were gaps in the treatment or you received treatment that was not related to your injury. Many of the people we help in car, truck or motorcycle accidents have been very seriously injured. It’s important to recover the most for your injuries.
4 Making a Low-Ball Offer
It’s not unusual for an insurance company to initially make you a very low offer. The companies know some people are desperate for money after being hurt in a wreck. You should never jump at an offer because you want to get fast cash. You may not even know the full extent of your injuries if the wreck is recent.
5 Implying You Don’t Need an Attorney
The insurance companies have a variety of tricks that suggest the accident is being taken care of that imply you don’t require an attorney. The may say “we accept responsibility” and imply you will get a fair offer. Nothing could be further from the truth.
If you or a loved one has been hurt in a wreck in Virginia it makes sense to at least meet with a personal injury lawyer to discuss your options. Consultations are free and confidential and do not preclude you dealing with the insurance company if you don’t hire us. Call today at (757) 455-0077.