Insurance companies have one main priority: to protect their own profit margins. And so the tug of war begins—with you seeking the full compensation that you deserve in the wake of your personal injury, and the defendant’s insurance carrier trying at every turn to pay out as little as possible.
Many insurance companies succeed in this game because the accident victims don’t call their bluff. They are duped by insurance company tactics and end up settling for far less than they are entitled to under the law.
Here are a few strategies employed by insurance companies to deny or reduce personal injury claims:
- Downplaying your injuries. This is probably the most common strategy of insurance companies. They will go to great lengths to show that you are exaggerating your health claims. To combat this tactic, make sure to document your health problems, work closely with your medical specialist, and avoid posting anything on social media that could disprove the severity of your medical claims.
- Trying to collect statements from you that will jeopardize your case. An insurance company may attempt to engage with you over the phone and get you to say things that will hurt your case. They may even try to record these conversations by telling you that the call is being monitored “for quality purposes.” It is best to avoid direct communication with the insurance company in discussing details of your case. Rather, you should leave the direct communication to your personal injury lawyer who knows which information should be disclosed and which should not.
- Pressuring for a quick settlement. The insurance company may present you with a settlement offer early on and push you to accept it. Many accident victims are overwhelmed by mounting medical bills and swayed by the allure of this quick cash, but there are dire consequences for settling too quickly. For example, health-related problems from your injury could continue to develop, and if you’ve already accepted the settlement, you will have no recourse to get financial help with your ongoing care. Speak with an experienced accident injury lawyer before settling to ensure that you are getting the best deal possible.
- Labeling health problems as pre-existing conditions. A favorite tactic of insurance companies is to pass your injuries off as pre-existing conditions. This is why it’s critical for you to seek medical help directly after an accident and attend all follow-up appointments. This will help your physician accurately diagnose your medical problems and establish that they were indeed caused by your accident.
- Claiming their insured is not at fault. Insurance companies will do all in their power to show that you share some of the liability for the claim. If it was a slip and fall injury, they may try to show that you were in an area where you shouldn’t have been. If it was a car accident, they will work to prove that you disobeyed some traffic law that may have increased your vulnerability. If your liability for your injuries was less than 50 percent, you are still entitled to proportional damages through Nevada’s comparative negligence law, so don’t let the opposing insurance company intimidate you. You can and should still recover the amount that is owed to you.
Because insurance companies will try to sabotage your case every step of the way, make sure you enlist the help of a qualified accident injury lawyer from the very start. An experienced attorney can expose the insurance company’s underhanded tactics and recover the full scope of the damages that you are entitled to.
After an accident, you will be called for settlement through the insurance company. The question should you trust them or not? Are they a friend or a foe? Will you be able to arrive at a win-win situation with their propositions? These questions will be answered through this infographic. But, of course, the full details will be discussed if you can find a lawyer you can trust.