Frequently Asked Questions by Car Accident Victims about Insurance Claims [Part I]
When a pedestrian, bicyclist or occupant of a passenger car is injured in an Atlanta auto accident, the personal injury victim generally will be compensated by an insurance company. In most cases, the insurance company that evaluates, negotiates and pays the claim will be the auto insurance carrier for the at-fault driver and/or a third party. Sometimes an injury victim must pursue a claim against his or her own uninsured motorist (UM) or underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage if the other driver either lacks insurance or possesses insufficient coverage. Because effectively dealing with insurance companies is a fundamental part of obtaining financial compensation for injuries in motor vehicle accidents, our Atlanta auto accident lawyers have provided answers to some frequently asked questions (FAQs) about insurance claims in the wake of a car accident.
What should I do if the other driver's insurance provider is trying to contact me for information?
When deciding how to handle communications with the other driver's insurance company, injury victims must remain cognizant of the fact that they are in an adversarial relationship with that insurance company. The carrier is not seeking information so that they can expedite paying you, but rather they are trying to obtain evidence so they will not have to pay the claim at all.
Although it may seem that the other driver's insurance company is asking for information that does not adversely impact one's claim, sometimes information provided pursuant to such requests may be used in unanticipated ways. Since many personal injury attorneys like those at Montlick and Associates offer a free consultation, it is advisable to seek legal advice and/or representation before furnishing information to the other driver's insurance company. The reality is that even your own insurance company likely has interests that differ from yours- they want to pay you as little as possible.
Is there any reason I cannot evaluate a settlement offer before retaining an auto accident lawyer?
There are a number of reasons to obtain legal representation as soon as practical if you suffer injuries in a motor vehicle collision. First, there are time limits that must be strictly complied with when pursuing a personal injury claim so that you do not lose valuable rights to compensation.
Second, there are many tactical errors to be made when one lacks significant experience handling auto accident claims. During the time that passes before an accident victim retains legal advice, an injury victim may make damaging statements or allow critical evidence to be lost.
Third, insurance companies often move extremely slowly in settling claims when an accident victim is not represented by legal counsel. Insurance companies recognize that people need funds to repair their vehicle, compensate for lost wages and cover uninsured medical expenses. If the insurance carrier drags the process out, the financial pressure on a vehicle collision victim may mount so that the insurance company is able to settle the claim for a fraction of its true value. An experienced Atlanta auto accident lawyer understands such tactics. The law firm can employ appropriate strategies to keep the case moving forward toward a settlement or trial.
Put Our Law Firm's Over 30 Years Experience to Work For You!
We invite you to read Part 2 of this blog post that answers more questions about car insurance injury claims. If you have more specific concerns about a car accident insurance claim, our Georgia auto accident attorneys have been representing injury victims for over thirty years throughout all of Georgia and the Southeast, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state. No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.