How are Personal Injury Cases Handled by Insurance Companies?
Have you ever wondered how insurance companies handle personal injury cases? You may know someone who’s had an injury claim, or heard about a specific injury case on the news, yet you’re probably uncertain how the personal injury claims process works. Don’t worry, you’re not alone, many others wonder the same thing. It’s important to understand what occurs should you be in the unfortunate position of needing to file an injury claim. We’ll review how insurance companies handle these cases, and explain just how important it is to have a lawyer by your side.
Injured in a Car Crash
Many personal injury cases begin with an auto accident. Two cars collide on a roadway because one driver wasn’t paying attention and failed to see the vehicle in front of them apply their brakes. The victim who was rear-ended has a damaged car and could suffer injuries such as whiplash, broken bones, or worse. What happens next is up to the insurance company.
The at-fault driver contacts their insurance company. The company obtains the police records, which includes information from witnesses. They also speak to both the driver who is insured under them, as well as the driver of the other vehicle. They then review all of the details, examine the damage to both vehicles, and determine whether the victim will be compensated and how much they will offer to pay. As long as the insured has sufficient liability insurance, many of the victim’s medical bills and auto damage, among other things should be covered. The problem is that this “coverage” comes about in the form of a settlement.
Why Does the Insurance Company Want You to Settle?
The injured victim should always be evaluated at the nearest medical facility to assess the degree of injury. At this juncture, it is also critical for the victim to contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. The insurance company will always offer to settle the claim for as little as possible in order to save money. Additionally, the at-fault driver’s policy may have coverage caps that limit the settlement amount. As such, the offered settlement may not be enough to cover lost wages, repairs, medical bills, and everything else that must be paid due to the other driver’s negligence.
You have every right to refuse that settlement and then sue the other driver in court. (You cannot outright sue the insurance company.) The insurance company will hire a lawyer to represent their interests in the case, which involves representing the at-fault driver. During the court proceedings, the burden is on you, the victim, to prove the other driver was negligent. Neither you nor your lawyer is allowed to mention that the insurance company is involved, even though they clearly are.
Obviously, the other driver’s insurance isn’t going to be looking out for your needs, which is why you must have a lawyer represent you. An injury attorney will help you navigate the legal process and will ensure you are properly compensated.
If you’ve been injured by a negligent driver, call me and I’ll Make Them Pay!®