If you’ve been in a car accident, chances are you’ll have to deal with an insurance adjuster at some point. And while most adjusters are fair and honest, some will try to take advantage of your situation.
They will do everything possible to ensure that you don’t receive the full amount of compensation you’re entitled to. After all, they have been employed by your insurance provider to minimize payouts on claims.
So, what are some of the dirty tricks that insurance adjusters use in personal injury claims? Let us find out.
1. The Lowball Offer
One of the most common—and effective—dirty tricks insurance adjusters use is offering a lowball settlement offer. This initial offer is usually just a fraction of what your claim is actually worth, counting on the fact that you’re desperate for cash and will take whatever they’re willing to give you.
Don’t fall for it! If you have a personal injury lawyer on your side, they will help you negotiate a fair settlement that covers all of your damages.
Before you accept any insurance settlement offer, make sure to have your lawyer review it first. They will be able to tell you if the offer is fair or not and help you negotiate for a higher amount if necessary.
2. The Delay Tactic
Another common dirty trick insurance adjusters use is delaying the claims process as much as possible. They know that the longer they can drag out the process, the more likely you are to accept a lower settlement offer just to put an end to it all.
And, the longer you have to wait for a settlement, the more financial strain you’ll be under. This is especially true if you cannot work due to your injuries.
If an insurance adjuster is dragging their feet, it’s essential to contact a personal injury lawyer. They will be able to put pressure on the insurance company to speed up the process and get you the compensation you need promptly.
3. The Denial Trick
One of the most frustrating—and effective—dirty tricks insurance adjusters use is denying responsibility for the accident. They will try to place the blame on you, even if it’s clear that you weren’t at fault.
And, if they successfully convince the insurance company that you were responsible for the accident, your claim will likely be denied entirely.
Don’t let an insurance adjuster get away with this! If you have evidence proving you weren’t at fault for the accident, provide it to your lawyer. They will use it to build a strong case against the insurance company.
4. The Recorded Statement
Perhaps the dirtiest trick of all is when an insurance adjuster asks you to give a recorded statement about the accident. They might make it sound like this is just routine procedure, but they’re really hoping that you’ll say something that can be used against you later on.
For example, if you say something like “I’m sorry,” or “I wasn’t paying attention,” they could use those statements to argue that you were partially at fault for the accident. It’s best to avoid giving a recorded statement altogether, or at least have your lawyer present before doing so.
5. Access to Your Medical Records
The insurance adjuster may request access to your medical records to help them assess your injuries. However, they may also be looking for pre-existing conditions that they can use to deny or devalue your claim.
If an insurance adjuster asks for access to your medical records, be sure to consult with an attorney first. They will be able to help you protect your records and make sure that the insurance company doesn’t get their hands on anything that could hurt your case.
6. Trying to Catch You Off-guard
Insurance adjusters are trained to catch people off guard and get them to say things they wouldn’t otherwise say if they were thinking more clearly.
They may call you unexpectedly or show up at your home unannounced in an attempt to catch you off guard and get information from you that they can use against you later on down the line.
The best thing you can do is be prepared by consulting with an attorney beforehand to know what to say (and what not to say) if an insurance adjuster contacts you out of the blue.
7. Refusing to Put Anything in Writing
Insurance adjusters may tell you that they will give you what you want but then refuse to put anything in writing. This leaves you with no proof of what was promised and makes it much harder to get what you are entitled to.
Always insist on getting any promises made by the adjuster in writing before moving forward with your claim.
Dealing with insurance adjusters can be a frustrating and overwhelming experience, especially if you are already dealing with injuries from an accident.
However, it is essential to remember that insurance companies are businesses, and their number one priority is to make money—not necessarily to help you get fairly compensated for your injuries.
If you have been injured in an accident, contact an experienced personal injury attorney who can protect your rights and ensure you get the compensation you deserve.