What Your Insurance Company Doesn’t Want You to Know
Serving Florida from our Boca Raton Office
Insurance companies have some of the most creative and clever commercials on TV. They spent millions each year trying to convince the public that they’re friendly, trustworthy, and in the business of helping you out in times of need.
In reality, insurers are some of the most profitable corporations on the planet. They are very much in the business of making money – and often at your expense.
Here are five things they don’t want you to know and hope you never realize:
1. They Undervalue Your Claim
After an auto accident or other accident, you may be surprised at how quickly the insurance company reaches out to you. They are quick to make contact, and they may offer you a fast settlement that seems like a breath of fresh air after everything you have been through.
What they don’t tell you is that you waive your right to file a lawsuit for full compensation the minute you sign an agreement accepting their settlement offer. The insurance company might offer you money to cover some medical bills and even your lost wages, but there is a good chance you are entitled to a great deal more.
Depending on your injuries, you could qualify for loss of earning potential, pain and suffering, and many other damages.
2. They Don’t Want You to Follow Up with Your Doctor
Not all injuries are immediately obvious. In many cases, symptoms take days, weeks, or even months to develop. The only individuals qualified to diagnose the full extent of your injuries are your doctor and any medical specialists he or she advises you to see.
The insurance company doesn’t want you to be thorough and diligent about getting treatment for your injuries. They have every incentive to pay you quickly, before doctors can determine how long your injuries will affect you.
3. They Don’t Want You to Do Your Own Investigative Work
Smartphones have dramatically changed the way people live and work. They have also empowered accident victims to be their own best advocate at the scene of an auto accident or other accident.
If your injuries permit, you should always take photos of your injuries, any property damage, and the surrounding environment at the scene of a car accident or other incident resulting in personal injuries.
If anyone saw the accident, you should also get the person’s name and contact info, as well as a statement about what they observed.
In the days and weeks following your accident, you can also use your smartphone to document your injuries, as many bruises and breaks actually get worse before they get better.
4. They Don’t Want You to Keep Track of Your Expenses
The insurance company’s main goal is to deny your claim. If that’s not possible, their next step is to minimize its value as much as possible. The less money they pay on your claim, the more money they keep in their own pockets.
One way they do this is by challenging your medical costs and other expenses. If you don’t keep records of every prescription bill, every doctor co-pay, and every deductible, you can be certain the insurer will challenge it.
5. They Don’t Want You to Get a Lawyer
Insurance companies know that personal injury victims usually receive considerably more compensation when they work with an experienced personal injury lawyer. To fight this, your insurer may try to scare you away from hiring a lawyer. Why pay a lawyer a portion of your compensation when you can have it all to yourself, they may ask.
What they don’t tell you is that you are highly unlikely to receive even close to the full value of your claim by attempting to handle your claim on your own.
The problem is so widespread, CNN conducted an 18-month investigation of several major auto insurance companies. Time and again, insurers denied claims and dragged out contested claims for so long, injury victims grew frustrated and gave up on getting the compensation they needed.
You can read more about this investigation on CNN.
One law professor called it “institutionalized bad faith.” A lawyer who formerly worked on the side of insurers admitted his company’s official policy was to make the claims process “so expensive and so time-consuming that lawyers would start refusing to help clients.”
In some cases, insurers offered accident victims as little as $50 to settle their claims. One woman was offered $15,000 for neck and back injuries. A jury later awarded her $167,000 plus interest.
Insurance Companies: Take Charge of Your Personal Injury Claim
Any injury victim deserves to be treated fairly. If you have been hurt, you aren’t out for a quick payday. You just want to get the compensation you need to pay your bills and take care of your family.
At Glotzer & Kobren, P.A. we have dedicated our lives to fighting back against underhanded insurance company tricks and tactics. Call us today at 561-300-6900 to schedule a free consultation to discuss your accident case.