You may be wondering how an insurance company evaluates your car accident claim and the basis on which they decide how much compensation to give. Knowing the process followed by the insurance agency can help you prepare better for your case. It will also give you an idea of what to expect in the coming weeks or months when your accident is being investigated.
Even when you know the entire process, it can become difficult to handle insurance adjusters. Having experienced lawyers by your side can be beneficial at such times. The lawyers can guide you through the entire investigation and also represent you in the court of law if need be. For example top10lawyers.com.au can help you find the right lawyer to fight your case.
1. The Investigation Process
An insurance claims investigation process begins when you speak to your insurance company. You can either fill up a form on the company’s website or call them directly and report the claim. Once the claim is reported, the insurance agency will assign an adjuster to the claim. The adjuster will handle your case moving forward and will contact you for more details about the accident.
2. Information You Need To Give The Adjuster
An insurance adjuster will require all the information about the accident. They will require a summary of how the accident happened, the people involved, and more. They may even have follow-up questions based on the information you give them. The insurance adjuster can also request additional details like:
- The accident investigation report
- A police report, if one was generated
- Pictures of the accident scene
- Any additional photos or videos that you may have
- Copies of medical bills and records
- A release to look at your medical records
The adjuster may also want to see your vehicle. You can inform the adjuster if you have additional vehicular damage or damage to any other property. You must familiarize yourself with the different kinds of losses you can claim and ensure you don’t leave anything out.
After collecting all the relevant information from you, the adjuster may contact other people involved in the case for more information. They may speak to the driver of the other vehicle and other witnesses.
In some cases, if the fault isn’t obvious or if the accident is severe, the adjuster may even visit the location of the accident. The visit can provide information about how the accident happened.
3. Medical Reports And Evaluation
In some cases, the insurance adjuster will ask you to get a medical examination with a doctor of their choice. This is called an independent medical examination. The adjuster can ask you for your medical records to determine the extent of your injuries. If you feel the adjuster is asking too many unnecessary questions about your injuries and treatment, you can speak to a lawyer to help you deal with them.
4. Preliminary Determination Of Fault And Payment
Once all the information is reviewed, the claims adjuster will make the preliminary determination of fault. They will take modified comparative negligence into account when making the decision and will create a report. They will look at your policy and see if it applies to your case. If your policy covers the damages, they will approve payments according to the policy limits.
5. When Can You Begin Repairs
You can start your vehicle’s repairs immediately after the accident. The insurance company can have a car body shop they prefer for vehicle repairs that they may recommend to you. If they don’t, you can get quotes from a few auto body shops and choose one suitable for your needs. Keep in mind, if you choose the body shop yourself, the insurance company can disagree with you on the cost of repairs.
6. What To Do If You Disagree With The Insurance Adjuster’s Decision?
You have several options if you don’t agree with the insurance adjuster’s decision. You can give them more information and request them to review their decision. You can also request a supervisor to review the paperwork and reconsider. You can send a formal demand letter to the insurance agency or start formal litigation proceedings.
7. How Long Will An Insurance Claim Investigation Go On?
If your case is not too complicated, the entire investigation may get over in just a few weeks. But if the case has too many complications, it can drag over several months. Every insurance company will have its unique method of investigating claims. Even within the company itself, the process may depend on how severe the accident was and how complex the issues in the insurance claim are.
8. Why Should I Prove My Case?
After an accident, it can feel unfair to prove your case to the insurance agency. Going through the hassle of all the paperwork and multiple calls and meetings can feel frustrating. You may wonder why you have to go through all this when you are already going through the trauma of the accident.
The fact is, as much as some insurance companies may want to help you, they have to do their due diligence. There are a lot of people who try to commit insurance fraud. As a result, insurance companies make sure they have investigated the case thoroughly before approving any claims.
Recovering from an accident and running around for your insurance claim can be extremely overwhelming. There will be many moments when you feel lost and may want to give up. But giving up is not an option, considering the costs that come after an accident. Speak to an experienced and highly skilled lawyer who can help you with your accident insurance claims.
An experienced car accident lawyer will help you understand the complexities in your case and will also deal with stubborn insurance adjusters on your behalf. And if things don’t go as planned, they can also file a case and represent you in the court of law.