The aftermath of a car accident is a confusing time. Many people find they are dealing with injuries, and they may not have a vehicle to get them back and forth to medical appointments. Once medical care has been sought and they are able, they need to contact their insurance company to report the car accident. This begins the claims process.
Who to Call?
Car owners in Georgia must have liability insurance to cover the injuries of other parties if they are responsible for an accident. When an accident occurs, any victims need to contact the insurance company of the driver who is at fault for the accident. Some people choose to reach out to their insurance company and have the company report the accident to their colleagues. However, this is the only role your insurance company will play if you are not deemed at fault. This step must be taken first to start the process and to get your insurance check.
Handling the Paperwork
Proof of loss forms will be provided by the other driver’s insurance company. Use these forms to provide details about the accident and list any losses. Accident reports, medical records, doctor and hospital bills, and paycheck stubs may be submitted with the proof of loss forms. Once the insurance company receives this information, they appoint a claims adjuster to handle the case.
The adjuster reviews the paperwork that has been submitted and uses it to learn more about the accident. They also review witness statements and the statement from the other driver. They may ask you to provide a recorded statement. There is no law that says a person must do so, and attorneys advise people to say no when asked to complete this step.
Insurance companies are in business to make a profit. They want a victim to record a statement so they can look for inconsistencies in the claim. They use these inconsistencies to deny claims whenever possible. Without a recorded statement from a victim, it becomes harder to deny a claim.
Approval or Denial of the Claim
The claims adjuster will either approve or deny the claim. If the claim is approved, settlement negotiations may begin. Many people prefer having a lawyer by their side during negotiations to make certain they are treated fairly.
However, the claims adjuster might deny the claim for several reasons. They may say their driver wasn’t responsible for the crash or the injuries were present prior to the crash. Furthermore, some claims are denied because the adjuster believes the medical care received wasn’t necessary or was too costly. If the claim is denied, the victim may file an appeal, and an attorney is of help when doing so.
When appealing a claim, the victim will need to prove liability. They must show the other driver acted in a negligent manner when driving. The victim can provide this proof even when the driver was not ticketed for the accident. The attorney will help the driver establish liability.
Speak with an attorney today to learn more about the insurance claims process. This individual will also help victims determine how much compensation they are entitled to under the law. This includes compensation for both economic and non-economic losses. Reach out today, as there are deadlines that must be met. Any delays could lead to you being responsible for the damage to your vehicle, your medical bills, lost wages, and more. You don’t want that.