In the wake of a serious accident, most people are struggling simply to deal with the aftermath of what happened. However, many accident victims may begin hearing from insurance companies shortly after their accident, looking to pressure them to settle their claims. Here are five ways insurers pressure accident victims into taking bad settlement deals:
- Applying pressure early and quickly
- No one knows how distraught and out-of-sorts accident victims can be than insurance companies. They know that the combination of stress, potential injuries, and financial woes mean that most victims and their families are not in a good mental state right after an accident. This is why many insurers will start calling shortly after they receive an accident claim, so they can begin to pressure victims before they have time to recover and handle things in a more reasonable fashion.
- Making victims give statements about their accident
- While this can seem like just another basic part of the claims process, many insurers want victims to give statements about the injuries and damage they suffered in an accident as soon as possible. This is not just about being thorough in their investigation, however. They know that if other evidence comes out later, they can use a witness’ statements against them to devalue their claim or deny it entirely.
- Rushing through claim documentation
- In a similar vein, insurers will typically want to document claims as soon as possible, including all medical paperwork related to the accident. Again, this is not about being thorough, but instead about trying to cut off further investigation. They do not want to wait until you get a thorough examination before they finalize your claim, because the more evidence you have of your injuries, the more they will have to pay out.
- Dragging their feet on paperwork
- For all of the rushing they do early on, insurance companies will suddenly slow down when it comes time to actually process your claim. In many cases, they will spend months finalizing and send out your check, a process they deliberately drag out to apply pressure. They know how costly and emotionally taxing a serious injury can be, and they want you to be thoroughly demoralized before they start sending you what they owe.
- Trying to prevent you from getting a lawyer
- Insurance companies hate it when accident victims get lawyers, and they will often discourage victims from seeking legal representation for their claims. They know that an accident victim represented by a lawyer has a much better chance of getting a higher settlement, and a substantially better chance at succeeding if they need to go to court. That is why, if you have been in a serious accident, you should speak to a lawyer with knowledge of personal injury law, who can advise you on your best next steps.
If you or a loved one have been injured due to someone else’s negligence, you should seek out the personal injury lawyers at Zlotolow & Associates. Our seasoned New York personal injury attorneys bring more than two decades of trial experience to your case. We serve all five boroughs of New York City, as well as Nassau and Suffolk County. Our aggressive personal injury attorneys always demand maximum compensation. We have helped thousands of clients recover through settlements and courtroom verdicts. To schedule a consultation, you can call us at 866-800-0092, or you can visit our contact page.