Dealing With Insurance Companies: Why You Should Hire a Personal Injury AttorneyRequest Free Consultation
If you’ve been injured directly due to someone else’s negligence, you only have to file a claim with their insurance company to recover damages so why bother hiring a personal injury lawyer, right? Even if it’s true that you aren’t legally required to hire an attorney to represent you after an injury, it pays to understand why so many people go this route and why it pays off for them in the long run—literally.
Insurance companies rarely have your best interests at heart, regardless of the compassionate promises in their glossy ads. Instead, insurance companies are private businesses that exist to make profits. Because they prioritize profits over payouts, an insurance company may take advantage of you while you’re vulnerable.
Instead of taking on a personal injury claim on your own, it pays to have a seasoned personal injury attorney representing your rights throughout the process while you focus on healing from your injuries.
Common Tactics Insurance Companies Use to Limit Payouts
Insurance company representatives may sound concerned and caring over the phone, but it’s important to be wary of some of the common tactics they use to protect their profits. Some methods insurance adjusters use to undervalue a claim or deny it completely include:
- Calling you within days of an injury with a low settlement offer in exchange for the signing away of your right to pursue further damages or file a lawsuit—often before you could possibly know the full scope of your damages
- Asking for medical authorization to look at the records of your injury and then combing through your medical background to search for previous injuries or pre-existing conditions they can claim are the true cause of your symptoms
- Calling on a recorded line and using your casual remarks out of context against you
- Claiming that the treatment your doctor recommends for you isn’t necessary
- Attempting to assign you a percentage of blame for the injury to minimize the amount they must pay you under California’s pure comparative negligence insurance laws
- Scouring your social media accounts and those of your friends in order to “catch you in the act” of participating in activities they can cite as a reason to disbelieve you’re really as injured as you claim—even if you were truly in pain
Insurance companies hire adjusters whose main job description is to find ways to lowball claims or deny coverage completely. A seasoned personal injury attorney knows to anticipate these tactics and counteract them.
How An Experienced San Diego Personal Injury Attorney Can Help
Personal injury lawyers are highly experienced in recognizing the methods insurance adjusters use to minimize and deny claims. Your San Diego personal injury attorney will diligently investigate the circumstances of your injury whether it’s:
- A San Diego car accident injury
- A slip-and-fall injury due to a negligent business owner
- Medical malpractice injury
- Injury from a defective product
- A dog bite
- A workplace injury, or
- any injury directly caused by another party’s negligence, recklessness, or intentional wrongdoing
Once your attorney determines the party at fault, they will gather evidence to prove liability by demonstrating the following required legal points:
- That the at-fault party owed a duty of care to take reasonable measures to prevent injury to others, such as a driver’s duty to follow the traffic laws
- That they breached this duty by acting negligently, recklessly, or with purposeful wrongful action
- That their breach directly caused your injury
- That you’ve suffered damages due to the injury
A skilled attorney can then craft a compelling case to present to the insurance company in an evidence-backed demand letter. The demand package also includes a careful calculation of your past and future damages including medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and any other damages that apply like emotional trauma or disfigurement.
With a diligent attorney backing your claim and handling the settlement negotiation process, you are much more likely to secure an ample settlement for your damages or else receive a jury award should your attorney have to press your case forward into a lawsuit to recover your losses.
Instead of going it alone against powerful insurance providers who do not share an attorney’s drive and compassion for their clients, you should hire an attorney to fight for your rights and best interests to maximize your compensation. Personal injury lawyers only get paid if you do, so they have extra motivation to be on your side through every step of the process.