If you sustained injuries in a car, semi-truck, motorcycle, or other vehicle accident, you may be getting ready to file a personal injury claim with the at fault party’s insurer. Filing a claim helps you get compensation for your losses and damages, as well as for any emotional pain and suffering related to your accident injuries. To get a fair and reasonable settlement award, you should be prepared to deal with an insurance claims adjuster. Flora Templeton Stuart Accident Injury Lawyers has 47 years of experience dealing with big insurance in car or other accidents to obtain top dollar settlements.
Dealing with an Insurance Claims Adjuster
The claims adjuster will investigate the damages stemming from accidents, both to property and people. Based on the findings of their investigations, they will then establish the extent to which the insurance company is liable. They may even check your Facebook page.
When it comes to personal injury claims, an adjuster investigates the claim and determines to what extent your injuries are coverable, either by your insurance policy or by the insurance policy of the at-fault party.
Assuming the claims adjuster finds coverage for your claim, this triggers an investigation to evaluate the scope of this coverage.
An investigation phase can include:
- Interviews with accident witnesses
- Review of accident reports and medical records
- Inspection of property damage or injuries
- Background checks
When the claims adjuster has completed the investigation of your claim, they draft a damage report. This report outlines the financial losses associated with the accident. The claim settlement process is initiated based on the information in the damage report.
How FTS Accident Injury Lawyers Negotiates a Personal Injury Settlement
There are five core components to the settlement process:
- Filing an insurance claim and getting you transportation
- Investigating (witness statements, photos, experts)
- Getting you to excellent physicians
- Getting your medical bills paid
- Negotiating a top settlement
1) Filing an insurance claim
Regardless of the circumstances of the accident, the initial step is to determine where you need to file your insurance claim. If you were involved in an accident, you will file a claim with your own insurance company since Kentucky is a no-fault state, even if another motorist caused the accident. Our law firm will reserve your Personal Injury Protection (PIP) benefits for medical bills and wages. The PIP is paid back by the person at fault i the accident.
In addition, you need to immediately file a claim with the insurance company for the at fault party. At our law firm we obtain the accident report to determine insurance and immediately notify the insurance company for at fault party so we can handle all communications on behalf of our client. We also determine if there is uninsured or underinsured on your own policy.
Once you have filed your claim, both the insurance company for the at fault driver and our law firm if we are representing you will obtain the evidence which includes:
- Accident reports
- Police report
- Medical bills and records
- Property damage quotes
- Car repair estimates
- Photographs of vehicle damage or injuries
- Witness statements
- Accident reconstruction by experts in serious cases and semi-truck accidents
The more evidence you can gather, the stronger your chance of a satisfactory settlement resolution. In particular, medical treatment is vital to establishing an injury claim.
3) How FTS Accident Injury Lawyers obtain a maximum settlement amount
After we have recommended excellent physician care for our clients and investigated the claim, we organize the following documentation:
- Medical bills past and future
- Lost wages
- Property damaged in the accident
- Expenses associated with the accident and your injuries
- Emotional pain and suffering
- Punitive damages
Using this information, our law firm drafts a demand letter with all of the records organized to the insurance company to demand fair compensation for our clients losses. A demand letter is a legal document outlining the damages you sustained in your accident. In addition it is important to elaborate on your injuries and outline any medical treatment you received. Explain the impact of any emotional distress or pain and suffering directly caused by the accident and your injuries. While you are waiting for a settlement offer from the claims adjuster, you should determine the lowest amount you would consider a reasonable settlement. Keep this number to yourself but consider this when negotiating your settlement and do not accept less than this amount.
4) Rejecting a lowball initial settlement offer from the claims adjuster
Very frequently the claims adjustor at the at fault insurance will make a lowball initial settlement offer in response to our demand letter. Sometimes, the figure will be absurdly low, a tactic used to assess whether you understand the value of your claim at all. Instead, meet any unsatisfactory initial offer with a counteroffer. It is important to draft a follow-up letter and explain why are you are rejecting this initial offer.
5) Emphasize the most favorable points in your case
To arrive at the optimal settlement value and outcome, you should focus firmly on the strongest points in your favor. Do not introduce any uncertainties or irrelevant factors into the claim. Your goal is to be fair and reasonable, while at the same time highlighting the severity of your injuries and the extent of their impact.
If, for example, you were involved in a car wreck, repeatedly emphasize how the other driver was at fault for the accident. Beyond this, stress the pain and suffering caused by your injuries and list the costs of all treatments and therapies. Focus, too, on any long-term physical effects resulting from your accident injuries. Listing all the favorable points in your case and backing these points up with evidence and documentation will give you the best chance of defending your position and getting the compensation you deserve.