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Five Ways Insurance Companies Avoid Paying Fair Compensation

ELI5: Negligence

Before we go any further, it’s important to understand how insurance works. When you pay your insurance premium, you’re paying for financial coverage (up to the policy limit)  in the event that you cause an accident. Most people aren’t causing accidents all that frequently, so it’s no surprise that the insurance companies are raking in big bucks with every person they insure. It’s not good for insurance companies to pay the injured party because those payments cut into the insurance company’s bottom line. So what do they do? They find ways to ensure that the injured party takes the lowest settlement possible—or, even better, deny the claim altogether . 

  “We Can Resolve This without Attorneys” 

Insurance companies are more profitable  when injured people accept smaller settlements. It’s in the insurance company’s best interest for you to accept the lowest settlement offer possible. However, it’s likely in your best interest to accept the highest settlement offer possible. A personal injury attorney’s job is to advocate for the injured party and get them the highest settlement offer possible (maximum compensation). So, why would insurance companies tell you not to hire an attorney? If you hire an attorney, the cost of your legal fees will likely be subtracted from your settlement. However, most people get more compensation from working with a personal injury attorney, even after the legal fees are subtracted from the settlement! The insurance company may tell you that if you don’t hire an attorney, you’ll be able to keep the whole settlement they’ve offered—but that settlement is likely going to be very small compared to what an attorney could have negotiated. According to the Insurance Research Council’s own studies, insurance companies pay people with attorneys larger settlements than they do to people without attorneys, so of course insurance companies don’t want you to hire an attorney. 

You Didn’t Seek Treatment 

If you’ve sustained injury in an accident, and a doctor gives you a treatment plan, it’s imperative that you follow the treatment plan. If the doctor says you need surgery, don’t wait a decade to get surgery! Waiting too long, or having large periods of time where you don’t get treatment,  can damage your personal injury claim because the insurance company may claim that you weren’t really injured, or the injury wasn’t that serious. They may try to argue, if s/he was really injured s/he’d have gotten treatment sooner. Not only can this result in a smaller claim, it might result in having your claim denied entirely. If you are injured, and your doctor has given you a treatment plan, you need to follow your doctor’s advice is you want to have a good personal injury case. 

You Waited Get Medical Care 

When you’re at the scene of the accident, you should never say that you’re not injured because, technically speaking, you don’t know whether or not you’re injured. After an impact, you’ve likely got a lot of excitement and adrenaline running through your system, so you may not realize the extent of your injuries, Some injuries, like whiplash, can take a few days to become apparent. If you’ve been in an accident, and you think you may have sustained an injury, you need to get medical attention as soon as you possibly can. If you wait too long to get medical attention, the insurance company may say that you’re not really injured, or they may argue that you could have been injured in some other incident as opposed to the car crash their client caused. This is why it’s important to be seen by a medical professional as soon as you notice signs of injury. 

You Verbally Accepted an Offer 

In some states, verbally accepting an offer can be extremely difficult to “undo.” In fact, saying the wrong thing to the insurance company can be a costly mistake. This is why it’s likely in your best interest to request  a free consultation with a qualified personal injury attorney as soon as you can. While not every accident will result in a personal injury claim, only a licensed personal injury attorney will be able to tell you whether or not you’d benefit from filing a claim. If you’ve sustained injury in an accident, it may be a good idea to speak with an attorney before you speak with the insurance company. 

You Signed Your Claim Away 

Having an attorney review a document before you sign away your claim is always a good idea. If the insurance company sends you a document to sign, don’t sign it until you know exactly what you’re signing, Knowing exactly what you’re signing doesn’t mean that you simply go off whatever the insurance company tells you. Depending on what you’ve signed, you may have accidentally signed your claim away. If this happens, saying  “I didn’t know what I was signing!” will likely not be enough to undo your signature.  

When You Need an Attorney 

If you’ve sustained injury due to the negligence of another person and you have questions about your personal injury claim contact Moxie Law Group today for a free consultation. 

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