Unfortunately, car accidents are extremely common events and your chances of being in at least one car accident within your lifetime are high. And like all things, there’s a right way and a wrong way to file a car accident claim. That being said, if you’re ever in a car accident in the future, we recommend that you heed the following advice. Below, we offer some key strategies for filing a car accident claim in Texas.
Even though you would be in a car accident with another driver, aside from the initial encounter, you will not be dealing with the at-fault driver. Instead, you’ll be dealing with his or her auto insurance carrier. When you are in a crash, you have 6 important tasks to do immediately:
- See if anyone was injured. If so, call 911 immediately and ask for an ambulance and the police to come to the scene.
- Assuming you and the other driver is not too injured, exchange contact information with each other. You’ll need to exchange: insurance information, license plate numbers, driver license numbers, name, address, and phone numbers.
- Do NOT admit fault no matter what. If you do, it could derail your insurance claim later on. Instead, leave the fault-finding to the insurance companies.
- If there were any witnesses, get their contact information.
- Take photographs of the accident scene with your cellphone. Take pictures of the locations of the vehicles, each vehicle’s license plates, any damage to the vehicles, any special road or weather conditions, any skid marks, and where the vehicles landed.
- Seek medical attention promptly, even if you don’t think you’re that hurt. Because of adrenaline, the pain from injuries can be masked for hours or even days. If you delay seeking medical treatment, the other driver’s insurance company could use that delay to deny your claim.
It’s important to understand that the insurance company is going to need a lot of information from you. The more evidence you collect and document, the better you’ll be able to support your case.
The Insurance Company Is Not On Your Side
It’s very important to realize that no matter how nice the insurance adjuster may sound on the other end of the line; the insurance company is NOT on your side. Insurance companies are for-profit companies, and the way they increase profits is by lowballing insurance claims. No insurance adjuster ever received a bonus or promotion for paying out a large settlement – remember that!
How does an insurance company lowball or deny a claim? By arguing that the plaintiff (injured driver) was responsible for the accident, by arguing that the plaintiff was not injured, or by arguing that the plaintiff failed to provide adequate documentation to support their claim. Sometimes, the insurance company argues all three points.
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Insurance companies are very good at playing hardball, and they love it when a plaintiff tries to represent themselves because they don’t know how much their claim is actually worth. The best way to protect yourself from a denial or a lowball settlement is to be represented by an experienced Plano car accident lawyer from The Zendeh Del Law Firm, PLLC. Contact us today to see how we can help you.