4 Insurance Tricks Insurance Companies Use to Minimize Settlement Payments
When a driver causes a car accident or you fall in a store, the responsible party’s insurance company should pay for all of your losses, right? Unfortunately, it is not always that easy, since insurance companies regularly challenge injury claims. These companies are businesses first, and to maximize profits, they try to minimize settlement payments as much as possible. The following are four tricks that insurers may use to reduce your settlement.
1. Challenge Liability
If an injured accident victim was also partially at fault for a collision, their recovery will be reduced by their percentage of fault. Therefore, insurance companies will investigate an accident to identify any evidence that you were also negligent and that your conduct contributed to the crash. Adjusters will also ask you questions to see if you will say anything that can be used to prove fault on your part. It is always wise to never give a recorded statement to an insurer and keep all of your conversations brief until you speak to an injury attorney in St. Louis.
2. Question Your Injuries
An insurance settlement can compensate you for your medical expenses, lost income, and intangible losses. Insurance companies can try to reduce settlements by claiming the following:
- Your injury did not stem from the accident in question
- You did not need all of the medical treatments that you want the insurer to cover
- You did not need to miss as much work as you did
- Your injuries did not cause you as much pain and suffering as you claim
Never discuss how you are feeling with an adjuster, as they are seeking any statements or comments that may indicate your injuries are not as severe as you claim they are.
3. Make Low Offers
While this may seem like an obvious “trick,” a low offer out of the gate is a common way that insurers successfully limit payments. If you do not have the right legal representation, you may not realize that the offer is too low or that you have the option to reject the offer and continue negotiations. Many injured claimants agree to a first offer that is inadequate, not realizing that by accepting the offer, they are agreeing to waive their right to take further action. Never accept an offer without having an experienced lawyer review it first, as you cannot go back and ask for more later.
4. Delay the Process
It can be stressful to have bills piling up after an injury. Insurance companies know that you want a check in your hand as soon as possible, so they often delay the process, hoping that you will accept any offer you get. Some adjusters may tell you that they can speed up the process if you agree to accept the first offer you get, which you should never agree to without first seeing the offer.
Contact an Insurance Claims Attorney in St. Louis Right Away
At Bruntrager & Billings, P.C., our St. Louis personal injury lawyers fight for the maximum insurance settlement in every case. If you need to make an insurance claim after an injury, do not hesitate to discuss your situation with a member of our legal team. Call 314-646-0066 or contact us online to set up your free case evaluation today.