Seven Secrets the Insurance Companies Don’t Want You to Know

SECRET #1: YOU MUST TAKE IMMEDIATE ACTION TO PRESERVE YOUR RIGHTS.

After an accident the clock begins to tick. There are a number of important steps that must be taken immediately. You must see a doctor as soon as possible, witnesses must be contacted, photographs of your injuries and the scene must be taken, and evidence must be preserved and collected. Write down as much as you can about what happened. The longer you wait the greater chance the evidence will be lost and if it is your case may be worth much less because you can no longer prove the things that justify a higher settlement. There is a statute of limitations that limits the time you have to make a claim. The time limits are different for a car accident versus a slip and fall claim. Don’t delay; take action immediately to preserve your rights. If you wait and the insurance company uses Colossus, they may deny your claim forcing you to file a lawsuit without having the opportunity to negotiate a reasonable settlement or you will lose your claim.

SECRET #2: THE INSURANCE COMPANY DOES NOT WANT YOU TO SPEAK WITH AN ATTORNEY

In a 1994 study, the Insurance Research Council found that injured people using attorneys received over twice as much money as those without lawyers. And this was after paying attorney fees! An attorney will provide you the valuable information you need. Do not rely on the insurance company providing you the information. The insurance company adjuster may even tell you not to talk to an attorney and pressure you to settle soon after the accident. Don’t do it! Seek competent legal advice as soon as possible after you are injured so that you can make informed decisions concerning your claim. For additional information the complete study is available from the Insurance Research Council, 1200 Harger Road, Suite 310, Oak Brook Illinois 60521.

SECRET #3: TAKE PICTURES IMMEDIATELY.

It is critical that you preserve evidence through photographs as soon as possible. You should take photos of your vehicle, the accident scene and any visible injuries as bruises, contusions, scraps and lacerations heal often leaving scars that do not show up well on photographs. The right photograph can be a powerful and persuasive toll in motivating the insurance company to make a fair and reasonable offer to settle. Videotaping can also be an effective tool to show the complete accident scene. With a facial scar you may want to have a professional photo to show the details of what is evident to you each day when you look in the mirror.

SECRET #4: INSURANCE COMPANIES DO NOT WANT TO PAY YOU WHAT YOUR ARE DUE. THEY WANT TO MAKE MONEY.

Insurance companies are in business to make money not to pay it out. Multi-billion dollar insurance companies want to make money to keep their shareholders happy. The less they pay you the better it is for their business. Even your own insurance company has the same incentive to pay as little as possible. The insurance adjusters are highly trained to use negotiation techniques to reduce how much they must pay you. An experienced and aggressive attorney will help you protect your rights.

SECRET #5: THE INSURANCE COMPANY MAY NOT WANT TO PAY ON A MIST CLAIM.

MIST means “minor impact soft tissue.” Insurance companies have many acronyms for this fact situation where you have minor damage to your car and have a stiff and painful neck and back. Insurance companies have spent years attempting to eliminate any payment for these types of claims. Sometime they only look at how much property damage your vehicle has even when there is significant damage to the other car. Often cars will have hidden damage that can not be determined until the repairs begin. Injuries are not directly related to the amount of damage to your car. We have all heard of the drunk driver who walks away with no injuries although the car was completely destroyed. If you have minor property damage and are injured it is critical that you speak with an experienced attorney to protect your rights.

SECRET #6: THE INSURANCE COMPANY MAY USE A COMPUTER PROGRAM TO EVALUATE YOUR CLAIM FOR MONEY FOR YOUR INJURY.

In an effort to maximize their profits and minimize how much they pay you, most insurance companies now use computer programs to analyze your bodily injury claim. Colossus, Claims Outcome Advisor, Injury Claims Evaluation are the most prevalent. According to Computer Science Corporation, 13 of the top 20 largest auto insurers now use Colossus. One shocking aspect of Colossus is that it has been implemented very effectively to substantially reduce payments for bodily injuries. The type of doctor you see, when you first seek treatment, and the duration of your care are all analyzed and impact the money you receive for your injuries.

SECRET #7: YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY MAY NOT BE ON YOUR SIDE

Check out the Fight Bad Faith Insurance Companies web site to see how your insurance company rates in taking care of the people it insures. Is your insurance company in the Hall of Shame or the Hall fame? If you have The Hartford, State Farm or Allstate you may have serious problems if you need to make a claim. On the other hand you may fair better if you have Chubb, Fireman’s Fund or AMICA. Your insurance company has an obligation to deal fairly with you, to treat your interest with equal regard to its own, to disclose to you all benefits, coverages and time limits that apply to a claim and to conduct a full, fair and prompt investigation of your claim. This list is only a sample of the obligations your insurance company owes you.

If you have more questions about what obligations your insurance company has to you CALL Robert Paysinger now  at 303-279-0221 for a freed telephone consultation.

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