CORONAVIRUS UPDATE: What We Are Doing to Protect Our Clients

Our Tools: How an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney Deals with Insurance Company Tactics

meetingAn experienced personal injury attorney will know the insurance companies’ tricks and tactics. Our firm has been in business handling personal injury claims for going on 40 years, and we have seen it all. It’s rare these days that the insurance companies come up with an entirely new trick – but they do still, and when we see a new one, we analyze it, figure out what they’re trying to accomplish, and determine how best to protect our clients from the new tactics.

A major element in analyzing these tricks and developing counter-strategies is to know precisely what the law requires auto insurance companies to do, especially which practices are outright forbidden. We understand the California Unfair Claims Settlement Practices and will call out an adjuster if they violate them. We have worked extensively with and understand the statutes in California that insurance companies must follow in handling uninsured and underinsured motorist claims for their own customers.

Communicating with Clients

It’s also essential that a personal injury attorney communicate clearly to clients why an insurance adjuster or defense attorney may be employing a particular tactic. Are they merely delaying to hold onto settlement funds a little longer? Will it be necessary to file and serve a lawsuit in order to get them to move to a more reasonable settlement offer? When should we offer the insurance adjustor more information to meet a legitimate request from them?

A major part of the communications work we do is with our clients – to educate them not only on the “ins and outs” of the insurance company's “dirty tricks,” but to explain why the insurance company may be making a quick, inadequate offer in hopes of achieving a fast, cheap settlement. Patience is a key attribute for a personal injury attorney when dealing with insurance injury adjustors. Many of them send out repeated demands for client medical records and bills and a quick resolution of their claims with an annoying frequency -- especially annoying when they know full well that the injury victim is still having symptoms from their injuries, still receiving medical treatment, still losing income.

Explaining the Need for Patience

And clearly, explaining the need for patience to clients is equally important. Settling a case while medical treatment is still ongoing can often leave significant amounts of settlement dollars on the table since the primary factors in determining a personal injury claim values are a clear understanding of the injury and its symptoms, likely future health problems from those injuries, the pain and suffering associated with the injuries, and the many pieces of monetary “damages” from medical bills, wage loss, loss of future earning capacity, the need for future medical care, etc. Not taking the time to collect and analyze all these elements before trying to settle a case is just what the insurance adjuster is looking for because it leaves value out of the claim.

Dealing with the insurance company “tricks” while communicating with our clients the important reasons for doing so are two of the most essential services we can provide. If you’d like to discuss your case with an experienced personal injury attorney, please contact us today.

For more information on the tactics and practices of individual insurance companies, see below:

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