What Not to Say to an Insurance Adjuster After an Accident
Posted on behalf of RizkLaw on Jun 27, 2019 in Auto Accident
This may sound extreme, but one poorly-worded, unclear statement from you to an insurance adjuster after a car accident can seriously hurt your chances of recovering fair compensation. Insurance adjusters are ready to pounce on anything they can use to discredit you and give them a reason to deny your claim.
That is why it is a good idea to review some of the kinds of comments you should never say to an insurance adjuster when talking about a car accident. The experienced attorneys at Rizk Law can consult with you before you make a statement to the insurance company to try to help you avoid saying anything that can damage your claim.
Opinions or Statements You Are Unsure About
Insurance adjusters use many tricks to try to get you to make a statement that can later be used against you. They may try to get you to be specific about details that you are unsure about, such as:
- Your speed
- The other driver's speed
- The time of day
- The exact weather conditions
- How the accident happened
Insurance adjusters may try this tactic to lock down an exact answer and then later attempt to discredit you if your statement is not in line with other evidence. If you do not know the answer to something, it is okay to say so.
'The Other Guy Must Have Been Speeding'
This comment usually comes after an accident occurred where the driver pulled out into traffic after stopping at a stop sign, or the light turning green. Declaring that the other driver must have been speeding may make the adjuster wonder if you were also partially responsible for the accident by pulling out in front of a speeder because you were distracted.
'The Other Car Came Out of Nowhere'
Saying that "the other car came out of nowhere" may indicate that you were not keeping watch for other vehicles, especially if you were traveling in the same direction for a significant amount of time. Even if you had the right of way, it is important that you drive responsibly and take care to avoid accidents. An insurance adjuster might wonder if you were paying attention if you make this type of comment.
Admissions of Fault
While you might say "I'm sorry" after something bad happens, admitting any type of fault for an accident can be used against you to try to deny your claim and even put the blame for it on you. Avoid admitting fault to your own insurance company, the insurance adjuster for the other driver's insurance company, the other driver or law enforcement.
Even if you think you might be partially at fault, you are likely unaware of all the variables that went into the accident. Admitting fault tells the insurance adjuster that your injuries are due to your own negligence and you should not receive compensation.
Badmouthing the Other Driver
Even if you think the other driver was acting in an irresponsible manner, it is important that you try not to badmouth the driver. Just stick to the facts without name-calling. Getting heated can make you look more erratic or even cause you to say something you do not mean.
Downplaying of Your Injuries
It is also natural to try to reassure others that you are fine after an accident. You may look on the bright side and think that you were lucky that the injury was not worse than it really is. However, when you downplay your injuries, the insurance company may use this to deny your claim, state that your injury was caused by a pre-existing condition or minimize the amount of damages you receive for pain and suffering. Also, avoid signing a medical release before you speak to an experienced Portland car accident attorney.
Contact a Knowledgeable Lawyer Before Talking to an Insurance Adjuster
There are many tricks that insurance adjusters use to try to get you to admit fault for an accident or to deny your claim. It is important that you avoid giving a recorded statement to the insurance adjuster since this will almost always be used against you to help the insurance company try to find a way to minimize or deny your claim.
The experienced personal injury team at Rizk Law can help prepare you before you give a statement to the insurance company and can handle communications on your behalf. Additionally, we can help you avoid making other mistakes with your claim, such as accepting a lowball settlement offer.
Contact us today for personalized help with your claim.