If at any point you find yourselves seeking compensation for an injury done by someone else's negligent actions, you can be sure you'll be dealing with an insurance company. If you've been injured in a car accident you'll most likely have to negotiate the compensation with the other driver's car insurance company.

In a scenario where you were injured on someone else's property (a so-called slip and fall), a settlement should have to come from the property owner's liability insurance. However and wherever you were injured, long and stressful meetings and calls with insurance companies are unavoidable.

But why is it stressful? Simply put, when you file a personal injury claim in order to receive compensation for your damages, insurance companies are not so eager to give you the exact amount you deserve. In order to know what to expect from insurance companies and insurance adjusters, you need to fully grasp how insurance companies operate and what their motivation is.

 

What is Insurance Adjuster's Goal?

An insurance adjuster is an employee of the insurance company and this is very important to remember. They will always do what is best for their company rather than what is best for you. The job of the insurance adjuster starts after a personal injury claim is filed.

The adjuster will then conduct the investigation to determine the circumstances of the incident that resulted in injuries. Not only that, they will go over all police records to try to determine who caused the accident or who is liable for the accident.

Next, they will examine the statements from the people involved and also the medical records of the injured person, hoping to find any irregularities. Hoping, because it is every adjuster's dream to find inconsistencies that will serve as a reason to deny your claim.

Denying an injury claim means that the insurance company does not have to part with any of its money, so gathering proper documentation is very important. If the adjuster doesn't deny your claim, they will try very hard to convince you to accept the lowest payout possible. Here's where the adjuster's job gets a bit difficult.

They will offer you a low settlement amount, but they have to be careful not to offer too little. If they offer an insulting amount of money, they risk a personal injury lawsuit. And when the case goes to trial, if the injured party's paperwork checks out, the insurance company may be ordered to pay an extremely high award. Also, the insurance company would be burdened by trial costs and other legal fees.

In a way, the adjuster's job is a balancing act, trying to give you just enough to keep you satisfied, but at the same time wasting as little of the company's money as possible. But whatever settlement amount they offer you will be far from fair and what you deserve.

What Is Insurance Adjuster’s Offer Based On?

When creating an offer, an insurance adjuster takes several things into consideration. The following things will let them determine the claim's worth:

  • Existing and future medical bills
  • Lost of income and lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Anything else that negatively affected the injured party

The adjuster will evaluate all these, but there are other factors impacting their final offer. For example, an insurance adjuster has to mind the policy limits. If the at-fault person has $30,000 insurance, this means that this amount is their policy's limit. For an adjuster, it means they will pay out up to $30,000 and not a penny more. If your injuries and overall damages exceed this amount, the difference would need to be collected from the at-fault person directly.

The last thing an insurance adjuster will consider is how strong your case is. If you have a bulletproof claim where the fault is easily determined and everything goes in your favor, it means that, in court, your case will be just as strong. This is the only time an adjuster will offer a larger settlement just to prevent you from filing a personal injury lawsuit which can get you an even larger settlement amount.

Insurance Adjuster vs. Personal Injury Attorney

Following a car accident or any other accident type, most people would prefer to focus on recovering from their injuries. Many also find that recovering while gathering evidence of their accident, reports, medical reports, and filing a claim with the insurance company is very stressful and is not helping them heal.

Negotiating with the insurance adjuster may be the last straw and this is why so many people actually accept the lowest offer- they just don't have the strength to go back-and-forth with the insurance company and lose their sleep over it.

However, having a personal injury attorney to ''watch your back'' may be the best solution and there are numerous ways your lawyer can help you with your insurance claim:

  • Prevention- If you report the accident to the insurance company immediately after it happened, don't be surprised if they send an adjuster to the scene. This adjuster will examine the accident scene quickly and then give you an offer on the spot while you are still injured, shocked, and confused.

 

But if you call an experienced injury attorney right after your accident, they may advise you on how to deal with the adjuster, what you should say, and what you should not say to them.

 

  • Gathering documentation- Your personal injury attorney may as well be your saving grace in this matter. They will gather all paperwork and collect all important documentation taking care that nothing is missing before they give it to the adjuster.

 

 Even if you need to collect a document, your attorney will say what that document is, why it's important and where to collect it. Your medical records and statements can be sent to your attorney directly-you only need to sign the release and let your attorney take care of the rest.

 

  • Negotiating- An experienced personal injury attorney, unlike an insurance adjuster, will tell you exactly what your claim is worth. When they negotiate with the adjuster they try to get you the amount that is fair and the amount you deserve. Furthermore, they are relentless and they stand their ground when they ask for a larger settlement amount simply because they know a lawsuit is what insurance companies fear.

 

They will also advise you on what offer to accept. If you are adamant about filing a lawsuit, your attorney can pretty accurately predict the result of the lawsuit based on the strength of your claim.

 

  • Composing a Demand Letter- Even before you receive an offer from the insurance adjuster, your lawyer can help you draft the demand letter. A demand letter is a form of the statement when you give your recollection of the accident, then give a settlement amount you would be satisfied with, after which the case would be settled.

But it is hard to write a demand letter without a personal injury attorney. On your own, you can only guess what your injury claim is worth and you risk asking too much or too little money. Your attorney, on the other hand, will know what compensation amount to ask for without risking a denial from the adjuster, but still giving you the best result possible.

 

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