Your insurance company/health plan may require more information from you if you do not have all the necessary documentation on hand. Follow these tips to make sure you are communicating effectively with your insurer.
Following a car accident, should I get in touch with the other driver’s insurance company?
You should take caution if you were in an accident and talked to the other driver’s car insurance company.
Even if it is clear that the other driver has been at fault for the accident, you may receive a call from the other driver’s insurance company. The insurance company of the other driver may still contact you even if you were at fault. Regardless, it would help if you were cautious about providing essential details to the other driver’s insurer.
There is no requirement that you contact the other driver’s insurer
We’ll quickly answer the question in the article’s title: No, speaking with the agent of the other insurance company is not required by law.
After a car accident, though, dealing with your insurer is a different story.
We can now ask if it is necessary to communicate with the insurance company of the other driver. This is a more challenging question, and it will be based on the specifics of your accident. As a general rule, you shouldn’t speak to the insurance company that is insuring the other party if there is a possibility you or another party involved in the accident may make a serious injury claim. If your own insurance company has an attorney or adjuster who can speak on your behalf, you shouldn’t talk with the other driver’s insurer.
In certain situations, however, contacting the other insurance company may make sense.
Why is it beneficial to talk to the other insurance company?
If the other party was responsible for the accident but either refused or lied to their own insurance company, it might be a good idea to speak with their insurer. There’s a possibility that they don’t even know what your car accident injuries are or what extent of damage your vehicle has suffered. You will probably have to wait a long time before you find out if the other driver’s car insurance company will issue you a settlement check if you don’t speak with them.
The ideal situation is for your attorney or a representative from your auto insurance company to contact the other driver’s insurer, but this isn’t always practical or possible, especially in the case of minor accidents. It falls on you to communicate the information. Take care when expressing your thoughts in this situation.
Advice for speaking with the other driver’s insurance company
In the first instance, remember that the other driver’s auto insurance company seeks to pay as little money as possible. You should be aware of this. There must be evidence to show that you are at fault, your damages are minor (or none at all), and that your injuries are nonexistent. Consequently, you should not tell the insurance company that you feel fine or that your injuries are minor. It is essential to know that some injuries do not appear right after a car accident, and some minor injuries can become much more severe. We have already written about automobile accidents checklist where you can read more about this topic.
Any statements you make to the other driver’s insurance company, for example, can be used by them to deny your claim or to reduce its settlement value.
Third, only answer questions that are directly related to your insurance claim. Whether you speak on the phone or write a letter, do not provide additional information or consent to having your statement recorded. The purpose of recording or writing a report is to bind you to a specific version of events, such as the extent of your injuries or property damage. Just days following an accident, your knowledge and feelings may drastically change.
Don’t guess what went wrong. Don’t worry if you don’t know. Just tell the auto insurer.
Last but not least, if you need to disclose more information about the accident (other than just the date of the accident and where it happened, your own insurance company’s adjuster should be on the line during your phone call). Your own insurance company’s adjuster would do better if you provided them the detailed information and allowed them to speak with the other driver’s insurance company directly. You may be able to avoid saying the wrong thing or more than you need to say by getting assistance from your car insurance agent.
The bottom line: if you’re confident the other driver caused the accident (especially, caused by a distracted driver) and any injuries or damages are minor, it might make more sense to speak with the other driver’s insurance company. Nevertheless, never raise any doubts about your injuries or damages or who is at fault. Unless you have legal representation, you probably should avoid speaking with the other driver’s insurance company without a lawyer if you think you may suffer serious injuries or damages, or there is a question of whether the other driver caused the accident.
It will help if you represent your interests
It is best to speak in a place where you are not distracted to communicate. If you have a question or concern about your health insurance company, you must do a little research on your own for the sake of your advocacy. When looking for birth control coverage, for example, please check this flowchart first. Using this script will also help you understand what is covered by your health insurance plan. Additionally, it would help if you familiarized yourself with which your health insurance plan might not cover types of birth control.
You might have to pay out-of-pocket costs in addition to the benefits offered by the health insurer.
In addition to doing your research, you should note any correspondence with your insurance company. Include the date, the representative’s name and employee number (if possible); a confirmation number; and your notes about your conversation. Keeping this in mind will not only protect you if anything goes wrong with your insurance coverage, but it will also safeguard you against future problems.
Pro tip: Find out if other insurance policies cover you as well.
Avoid negotiating with insurers
The first thing you need to do if you have been involved in a car accident is hire an experienced attorney before you speak to an insurance adjuster. The good news? We offer free consultations:
You should also know what not to do while talking with an adjuster:
- Avoid admitting fault at all costs
- Do not mention any medical services or records
- Refrain from mentioning personal information
- Do not accept any settlement
- Don’t sign anything
- You feel rushed. You should state it
- Always be friendly, respectful, and polite
The adjuster’s job is to save the insurer money, not yours. People with bad luck can take advantage of those who cannot bargain for themselves all day on the phone with them. You and your family file to these people, and their number one goal is to nickel and dime you until you have no money left.
An adjuster will attempt to lower your settlement
An adjuster may ask:
The question is always: “Was there a moment when you thought you might have avoided the crash, regardless of the other driver hitting you? – The answer you always give is no.
Comparative liability is the concept. Whenever you are found at fault, even just 1% of the claim is your responsibility. 1% represents the policy limit, and millions of dollars can easily be eroded.
You can imagine that they will use many schemes before making an offer to downgrade your settlement.
Singleton Law Firm, LLC, can handle the negotiation for you if you say nothing (pleading the fifth).
Always talk to a lawyer first
When you need additional information, call the toll-free number of your insurance provider listed on the back of your insurance card to find out what treatments are covered and how much you will need to pay out of your pocket.
For a reason, our accident and personal injury lawyers in Atlanta, GA are the best: we fight for families who are constantly bullied into signing away their rights to collect money, and we win.
If you are curious about what to do after a hit-and-run accident, you can read our blog post – https://atlantainjurycounsel.com/how-to-locate-a-hit-and-run-driver-after-car-crash/.