While there are a handful of auto insurance companies out there, when it comes to auto accident claims, they all follow a very similar process.
REMEMBER If your auto accident claim has been denied or the insurance company make you a
cash settlement offer, you should ABSOLUTELY consult with a personal injury attorney. Even if it
isn’t us, DO IT NOW.
At Manning Law, we believe in transparency and so we thought we’d shed some light on the auto accident claims process.
Personal injury lawyers should all follow similar steps.
Request a Police Report.
Anyone can request a copy of a police report—including your insurance company.
Nowadays, insurance companies subscribe to databases which provide them with near real-time access to this information. They’re likely to find it even if you didn’t tell them about it.
A personal injury attorney who represents you will request this information as well. It’s a good starting point.
Contact the Other Driver
Your insurance company will contact the insurance company of the other driver to get the other side of the story.
Here’s the twist.
You and the other driver may actually have the same insurance company—even if the cards you exchanged have the names of different companies on them!
In this all together too common case, the insurance company will have all of the information about an accident.
This means they’re in the driver’s seat!
Encourage the Victim to Waive Important Rights.
If you were injured, you’ll be asked to sign a medical information wavier. This document allows your doctor to answer any questions they may have about your injuries and to release your medical records into the INSURER’s custody.
People frequently sign healthcare information waivers. A common example might be a parent allowing a grandparent access to a child’s medication list.
This information is considered private and is protected under federal law.
If you’ve been asked to sign a form like this one, seek a free consultation with a reputable attorney immediately.
Reinvestigate your Auto Accident Claim.
Your insurance company will also likely reinvestigate the accident. The adjustor you meet with will likely perform their own survey for damages. They’ll note things including the nature and extent of the damage to the vehicle.
If something seems strange, expensive, or suspicious they may investigate the auto accident claim further.
Sometimes this means looking for other witnesses. Other times it may mean consulting medical records or recreating the accident.
One More Thing.
Insurance companies also perform periodic reviews (or ‘audits’) of auto accident claims they have previously paid out. Some insurance companies even have special divisions that specialize in social media auto accident claim investigation!
If you’re filing an auto accident claim don’t let it be denied. At Manning Law we specialize in auto accidents and auto accident claims.