Each year in the U.S., approximately 3 million individuals suffer injuries in traffic-related accidents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). After a car accident that was caused by someone else, most people are aware of how to obtain compensation for their expenses.
While they may understand the general idea of filing a third-party claim with the at-fault party’s insurance provider, there is often confusion at to what comes next or how to handle questions when an insurance adjuster calls.
Do I Have to Talk to Insurance Adjusters?
By law, you are required to report accidents to your own insurance company, even if you do not plan on filing a claim. If you do file a claim with your own insurance company, you will be required to discuss this claim with the adjuster. However, you are not required to speak with the insurance adjuster for a third party insurance company, beyond offering very basic information, such as:
- Name, address, phone number
- Your place of employment and the type of work you do
Before providing this information, be sure to identify the individual you are speaking with and ask for his or her name, job position, and phone number.
What Not to Say
When you speak to a third-party insurance adjuster, it is important to understand that anything you say can be used as an official statement or to bring question to your claim. Offer as little information as possible.
Here are some tips:
- You do not have to discuss your injury or your treatments. If you are asked, and you likely will be, simply say you are still treating your injuries. Do not provide any details about the injuries themselves.
- You do not have to discuss your work schedule or your income.
- You do not have to discuss the accident beyond providing basic details of when and where it took place and the vehicles involved. Any further questions should be politely refused with the statement that you are still conducting your own investigation into the accident.
- Do not agree to any offered settlement.
For a free legal consultation, call 702-602-HURT
Do I Have to Accept an Insurance Company’s First Offer?
It is not uncommon, particularly in cases where there is clear liability on the part of their insured, for an insurance adjuster to offer a low settlement in exchange for a quick resolution. Many individuals who are overwhelmed by the injury and the uncertainty of the future are tempted to accept this offer.
Unfortunately, doing so is often a mistake. Settlements are final. Once you have agreed on a settlement amount, you are unable to go back later and ask for more money if it wasn’t enough. Catastrophic injuries have lifetime consequences, and an experienced car accident attorney can help value your case to ensure that your future expenses are accounted for.
Your Car Accident Lawyer Can Negotiate
One of the many important services a car accident lawyer will provide for you is negotiation with a third-party insurance provider in order to garner a fair settlement offer on your behalf. Your lawyer understands how to properly value your case and fight the tactics that insurance companies often use to avoid large payouts.
Will the Insurance Company Pay for My Injuries?
Insurance is the means by which the vast majority of personal injury claims are paid. While it is possible to sue an uninsured person and even to obtain a judgment on your behalf, collecting your award will likely prove difficult as most people cannot afford to pay the expenses of auto accidents out-of-pocket.
Individuals who have been injured in an accident in Nevada can recover both economic and non-economic damages in a personal injury claim. Damage is a legal term for a payment made in compensation for harm.
Economic damages involve the compensation for the expenses of your injury, while non-economic damages are compensation for the impacts of your injury on your quality of life.
One of the biggest parts of the economic portion of your damage claim will likely be medical costs. Medical costs include expenses pertaining to:
- Emergency treatment at the scene of the accident as well as in the emergency room
- Transport to the hospital by ambulance or medical aircraft
- Diagnostic and laboratory testing
- Surgical and physician services
- Prescription medication
- Physical therapy and rehabilitation
- The provision of assistive devices such as prosthetic limbs, crutches, or a wheelchair
Wage loss is another big portion of your economic damage claim. Nevada law allows you to recover the wages you lost due to being too injured to work or missing work in order to attend an injury-related appointment.
If your injury results in a permanent disability that renders you unable to return to work or to earn in the same capacity as you did before the accident, you can also recover damages related to your loss of future earning capacity.
Will Insurance Cover Repairs?
Yes. Your economic damage claim can also demand the cost of repairing or replacing the vehicle you were driving when the accident occurred.
Damage to Your Quality of Life
Not all injuries are physical. Many individuals find themselves struggling with the drastic changes that their car accident injuries have caused to their life.
Your non-economic damage claim can include quality-of-life impacts such as physical pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of the enjoyment of life if your injuries prevent you from participating in activities you previously enjoyed.
Our Experienced Personal Injury Lawyers Will Get You Fair Compensation
At Pacific West Injury Law, we understand that car accident injuries can impact every part of your life. We will fight for your right to obtain fair compensation for your injury and the emotional and financial damage it has caused. Let us explore your legal options with you. For a free case evaluation, contact us online or by calling (702) 602-4878.