What Not to Say to an Insurance Adjuster
Posted on Saturday, November 20th, 2021 at 7:25 pm
The last thing you need after an accident is the stress of dealing with the insurance adjuster for the trucking company whose driver was responsible for the crash. Rather, you need to focus on your recovery and getting back to work.
However, when you get that inevitable call, we have some tips to help you get through it without damaging your case.
The Insurance Adjuster’s Motive
The entire motive of the insurance adjuster’s call is to get you to say something that could potentially damage your case. They will then attempt to use your words against you so that they can pay less money or no money later on when it comes time to settle your claim or go to court.
Ideally, the insurance adjuster will try to get you to admit that the accident was somehow your fault rather than their insured’s fault. Under no circumstances should you admit any liability for the accident. Do not let them put words in your mouth.
Additionally, the insurance adjuster will try to:
- Minimize the extent of your injuries by getting you to say you’re uninjured or that your injuries are minor. Do not say you are feeling better or aren’t that hurt. Sometimes injuries get worse over time after an accident.
- Attempt to get you to discuss in great detail your injuries and your diagnoses.
- Aim to have you give your version of the accident in an effort to disprove your claim.
- Try to mention other possible causes for the crash, such as your own distracted driving, in hopes of getting you to agree.
You should also disallow any efforts on the part of the insurance adjuster to record the phone conversation. Once again, it’s a way for the adjuster to try to use your words against you. Only this time, they could use your words at trial by playing the actual recording. If you misremember something you told police at the accident scene and then weeks or months later tell the adjuster something different, they could use that recording against you at trial.
Tips on What to Say or Do
Now that we know what you should not say. Let’s take a look at what you should say and do when you receive a call from an insurance adjuster.
- You are under no obligation to talk to them. Let them know you will only speak to them in the presence of your attorney.
- Do not act like they are your friend. If they come across that way, it’s an act. The insurance adjuster is not on your side and may try to act friendly with you on the phone in hopes of getting you to let your guard down and say something you will regret later.
- Instead, be polite but also concise with your responses. Remember, you’re not pals and you should not speculate. Stick to the facts and respond directly to each question asked.
- Do not provide a written statement at their request or agree to sign anything, especially not without your attorney present.
- Find out specifically who you spoke to, what company they are employed by, and their contact information.
What If They Ask to Settle Your Case?
Do not agree to settle your case with the insurance adjuster, especially so soon after your crash and without the presence of a lawyer. If they are already offering you a settlement, then they know their insured is responsible for the crash and are likely trying to persuade you to accept a settlement amount that is less than what your case is really worth. They may also be aware that you haven’t consulted with an attorney yet.
Also, keep in mind that you may still be treating for your injuries. Perhaps you’re still out of work and are unsure when or if you can even return. With so much uncertainty and with your treatment ongoing, do not consider a settlement.
How Our Lawyers Can Help
If a trucking company’s insurance adjuster has contacted you and you are uncomfortable about talking to them, call the Birmingham truck accident lawyers of Farris, Riley & Pitt, LLP. We are on your side and are familiar with all of the tricks they’ll use to try to damage your claim.
Instead, while you focus on your recovery, we’ll focus on helping you get the compensation that you deserve. And don’t worry about paying for any legal fees upfront. We work on contingency, so we don’t get paid until we get compensation for you.
Call the experienced truck accident lawyers at Farris, Riley & Pitt, LLP today at (205) 324-1212.