Car accidents are stressful experiences. Between injury, vehicle damage and pending litigation, victims find considerable difficulty dealing with their insurance company. All these stressors can cause people to make costly mistakes when filing their claims.
Though insurance policies may seem confusing, people can avoid trouble with claims adjusters by avoiding some key mistakes. The following guidelines can help motorists secure damages for a recent claim and keep their coverage.
Avoid these 7 filing mistakes
- Incomplete claims: Many insurance companies receive claims without complete information. Victims eager to put the accident behind them or secure coverage quickly may file a claim before seeing a doctor or having a mechanic assess the damage. Obtain all relevant information before filing a claim.
- Unnecessary claims: Some accidents may be as minor as they seem, and do not require a claim. Many people file claims for small fender benders or paint scratches — repairs that fall well below the deductible. Filing unnecessary claims will only increase premiums and cost more money.
- False claims: Some people may try to file a false claim, lying about the accident’s cause to shift fault to another driver. Insurance adjusters will likely find evidence enough to deduce the lie, voiding one’s claim entirely.
- Absence of photos: Those involved in an accident should take as many photos and videos as possible. Take pictures of damage, skid marks, road conditions, traffic lights, weather conditions, etc.
- Absence of other evidence: Photos are vital evidence, but adjusters can still miss important details like aftermarket additions to a car.
- Comments on health: Adjusters may call to inquire about one’s health following an accident. Some people automatically respond by saying they are “fine” or “okay.” An adjuster may take this information to court to deny coverage for sustained injuries. Refer them to the doctor.
- Too much information: Some people will provide too much information. Excessive explanations or elaboration may yield some bit of innocuous information that compromises one’s entire claim. Stick to the bare facts and refrain from qualifying or evaluating any injuries or damages.
Concerned about filing an insurance claim? Consider legal help
Those filing insurance claims for car accidents find more success by working with a local attorney familiar with Indiana’s personal injury laws. An attorney can assess a claim, review the information and draw up settlement paperwork.