Understanding the process of dealing with the insurance company after a big truck accident in Florida is key to recovering fair compensation for your injuries and losses. If you don’t, you may make a mistake that results in a lower settlement than you deserve. You may even lose your right to compensation altogether.
The Liable Insurance Company Will Contact You After the Truck Accident
After the crash, the truck company’s insurer will most likely call you. When the insurance company calls you, remember that you are in control. You may feel nervous or unprepared, but you do not have to answer their questions and you do not have to give them information. In fact, you shouldn’t do either without a Florida truck accident lawyer on your side.
The information you provide to them may damage your chances of receiving proper compensation. You can politely decline to speak with them in favor of talking at a later date or simply tell them you have legal counsel and will not be speaking about the truck accident at the moment. Even answering a simple “how are you doing?” can hurt your insurance claim.
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You Must Contact Your Insurer Following a Big Truck Collision in Florida
Your insurance policy requires that you notify your insurer of the accident. It is a contract after all, and failure to follow the terms could mean losing your coverage, receiving higher premiums, or losing the right to file a claim for your applicable benefits. You should notify the insurance company as soon as possible, but avoid speaking with an adjuster before you’ve spoken to your lawyer.
The Insurer May Ask You to Give a Recorded Statement
The adjuster for the trucker’s insurance will ask you for a recorded statement. They’ll ask you questions about your injuries, how the accident occurred, what you were doing at the time, where you were headed or coming from, or how you reacted to parts of the crash—anything they can do to reduce their liability and ultimately pay you less.
Do not agree to give a statement. You have no legal obligation to provide one to a third-party insurance company in Florida, but if you’re filing a claim with your own insurance, your policy may require it. In either case, contact your big rig accident lawyer to guide the process. He or she can communicate with the insurance company on your behalf or help you provide a written statement instead.
The Third-Party Insurer Will Make a Settlement Offer
The liable insurance company may attempt to offer you a check before you’ve even filed a claim or had a chance to get your bearings after the crash. If you haven’t filed a claim, you have no clue what your case is actually worth, so accepting any check is a bad idea. A good rule of thumb: never take the first offer.
Once you sign their release forms, you won’t be able to recover any more money from the insurer. You’ll be left to pay for any undiscovered injuries or expenses that arise from your accident. At this point, if you haven’t contacted an attorney, you should. Your injury lawyer will be able to calculate the value of all your losses from the commercial vehicle crash and tell you what your case is worth. They can also protect you from lowball settlement offers.
The Trucking Insurance Company Knows What Your Case is Worth
Throughout the claims process, the insurance agency may make you offers. Even if you think you know the value of your case, you may benefit from a second opinion.
Rest assured the insurance adjuster is well aware of what your case is actually worth. They know the value of your injuries and related losses because they have access to industry information regarding similar cases. They are counting on the fact that you don’t know how much your injuries are worth.
No Offer is Final
Despite what the insurance adjuster or any piece of mail you receive may state, there is no such thing as a final offer. If you have a valid claim for compensation from the trucking company or another liable party, they have a legal obligation to pay. They cannot simply take the offer back and walk away. Your lack of satisfaction with the settlement offer just means you’ll have to file a lawsuit to get the money you deserve.
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You Have a Right to File a Lawsuit
During the lawsuit, the insurer is more likely to make a fair settlement offer, especially if you have a legal representative. Insurance companies don’t generally like to spend money on a court battle with a truck accident lawyer who has prepared a strong case. They’d rather settle than lose even more money.
Get a Florida Truck Accident Lawyer to Handle Your Case
If you suffered a serious injury in a truck accident, talking with insurance companies is unavoidable. Understanding the process can empower you during your most vulnerable time. We also recommend hiring a personal injury attorney who can take care of the insurance company for you. Call The Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine to speak with a truck accident lawyer for a free consultation today.
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