Can I harm my case by talking to the insurance company on my own?
- July 26, 2016
If you have been involved in an accident, there may be a million thoughts racing through your head. You may have been injured, and are in the midst of a painful recovery. You may be worried about how you will afford to fix your vehicle or how much time you will lose from work. Being involved in an accident is traumatic financially, physically and emotionally. The key to getting through it is to take the right steps to avoid making the problem worse.
Insurance Companies Are Not Charities
Insurance companies are for-profit companies that exist to make money. They know how traumatizing it can be to be involved in an accident and they will prey on this. They know that you may want to explain your side of the story and ensure that you are not sued. We understand your feelings, but talking to the insurance company is a mistake. Never talk to the insurance company on your own after an accident.
The other driver’s insurance company may contact you and ask you for a statement. Do not talk to them. Tell them that your personal injury attorney in Los Angeles will be in contact with them with a all of the information they need. Even if you do not yet have an attorney, tell them that your attorney will reach out to them. The reason they are reaching out to you is that they are trying to avoid paying a claim. If they can get you to admit fault, they can say that they are not liable for any damages and make you pay for the entire accident.
Don’t Cash Any Checks
In some cases, the insurance company will simply send you a check for the damage that their client caused. Do not cash this check. In the majority of cases, the insurance company just wants a quick resolution to the case without a trial. They don’t want to have to account for all of the damage that their client caused. They will simply send you a check for some small amount which implies that you are settling the case. Sometimes the check includes language that you are giving up your right to sue later. In other cases, the language is not so clear. This technique causes many people to not get the money they deserve for their injuries. Always consult your attorney if you get any checks or correspondence in the mail from an insurance company.
Don’t Talk to the Other Party
Sometimes the other driver will give you a call or stop by for a friendly chat to discuss the accident. They may pretend that the whole interaction is just a chat to check up on you and make sure you are okay. This conversation can cost you your case. The insurance company may have asked them to talk with you as a means to gather information. They may get you to say that your injuries are not that bad. They may come to your house and observe you walking without your cane or going throughout your normal routines. Be assured that they will use this against you in court. Don’t invite them to your house and don’t talk with them on the phone. If they want to talk, give them your attorney’s phone number.
Never Apologize or Admit Fault in an Accident
Many drivers sink their case when they admit fault in an accident. Some drivers will call the other driver to apologize for the injuries they suffered. While this may seem like the kind thing to do, it is not wise. Admitting fault is a surefire way to lose your case and be stuck with hefty medical and repair bills. Even if you were at fault for part of the accident, don’t admit anything. Make their lawyers prove it in court.
Accidents and injuries are traumatic. You deserve to be compensated for your injuries and financial losses. Don’t make the mistake of dooming your case before it starts. You need a skilled and competent attorney who can fight for your rights and get you every penny you deserve. Don’t let an unscrupulous insurance agent rob you of the money they owe. Call us for a free consultation today to discuss your case.