We all know that car accidents are a part of life, and almost everyone has either been involved in one or knows someone else who has. According to the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles, more than 395,000 car accidents occur just here in the Sunshine State every single year. If you have become the unfortunate victim of one of these accidents, you are most likely dealing with many unanticipated life changes including physical and emotional suffering. However, one thing you should expect in the days following your accident is a call from an insurance adjuster. The adjuster may be working for your own insurance company or could be a representative of the insurance company for the other driver.
Regardless, your statements to the insurance adjuster can have a major impact on the outcome of your claim and, therefore, even what seems like an innocent statement can actually have a major impact on your life after an accident. No matter how polite and caring an adjuster may seem, do not be fooled – part of his or her job is to try to pay you the least amount possible. Therefore, it is important to know what to say and what not to say when this call comes.
Just like at the scene of the accident itself, do not apologize. Even if you think that the accident may have been your fault, you should understand that accidents often have more than one cause, some of which may not have been immediately obvious to you in the heat of the moment. Accepting fault or apologizing can seriously damage your ability to obtain compensation in a personal injury case. While Florida law offers some protection, this is a slippery slope.
Be Conscious of Oversharing
Outside of answering basic questions such as confirming your name, the make and model of your car, and the date of the accident, you should be hesitant to respond to any other questions. For example, if the adjuster asks you for details regarding the accident, you can politely respond that the police reports have better details.
You should also never make any statements about how you are feeling. Even a simple statement such as saying you are feeling “okay” today can later be used against you to accuse you of exaggerating your symptoms.
Understand That You Have No Obligation to Converse
It is totally within your right to decline to give a recorded statement. Unlike what may seem to be the case, you can politely decline to speak to any adjusters entirely. There is no rule requiring you to talk to a representative from an insurance company. Especially in cases in which the prospect of this conversation seems intimidating or makes you nervous, it is better to simply give the adjuster your attorney’s contact information so that you do not inadvertently get bullied into saying something you should not have.
Allow an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney to Handle This Conversation
Conversations with insurance adjusters can have serious consequences for the future of your injury case or claim. Therefore, it is important to hire a personal injury attorney to represent you as soon as possible after a car accident. With an experienced personal injury lawyer at your side, you can rest assured that your rights are protected and that you will not accept compensation that is less than you deserve. Additionally, your attorney will communicate with the insurance companies on your behalf and focus on ensuring your rights are maximized while you focus on recovering from your injuries. Contact the Ocala personal injury lawyers at The AP Law Group today to make certain your rights are protected and you get the compensation you deserve.