What to Say to an Insurance Adjuster

Never speak to the insurance company without your lawyer!

If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, and you suffer injuries, you probably will have a lot of questions. Maybe you were immediately treated in an emergency room, but weeks later you noticed that the pain simply doesn’t go away. In the first 24 hours after the accident, you probably will start getting phone calls from insurance adjusters offering to help you get your vehicle repaired. They may want to get a statement from you as well. But beware! Insurance adjusters are not your friends, even if they seem ‘friendly.” Their primary job is to protect their driver and their interests, not you. Their goal is to see you get the least compensation possible, and they are very good at what they do. After a car wreck, you want to make sure you are guided through the process by a skilled Edwardsville auto accident attorney who can help you avoid making critical mistakes early in the process that could cost you thousands.

“I’m Busy. Can We Chat Latter?”

There is no reason to be rude or defensive if the insurance company calls you. Instead, simply tell the adjuster that you are very busy at the moment and will need to get back to them shortly. But before you get off the phone, be sure to ask them for the following information:

  • The adjuster’s name
  • The insurance company
  • Their phone number (direct if they will give it to you)
  • An email address
  • A fax number
  • The claim number for this accident

Once you have this information, politely end the call, and call your attorney right away. This information will help your attorney get things started on their end, and they will take it from there.

They Offered to Pay for My Car

Of course they offered to repair your vehicle. And if you hire an attorney, they still will. In fact, they might move even quicker. Do not let a small offer like a property damage claim cost you a substantial recovery. Property damage adjusters will often take a recorded statement, and if you are not very careful, you may admit things that could seriously hurt your case.

Major Mistakes When Speaking to Adjusters

The biggest mistake you can make is agreeing to a recorded statement before you’ve spoken to an attorney. During a recorded statement, you may honestly admit things that the insurance company would not have otherwise known. For instance, in motorcycle collisions, an adjuster may not even bring up whether you were wearing a helmet, but if you accidentally mention not wearing it, they will try to use that information to reduce any bodily injury compensation. If you had an attorney, they would advise you that under Illinois law the insurance company may not use the lack of a helmet against you to reduce compensation. This has been repeatedly affirmed by courts in Illinois and was established in Clarkson v. Wright, 108 Ill. 2d 129 (1985), in which the Illinois Supreme Court ruled that seatbelt use and helmet use are not to be used to minimize compensation or used as evidence of comparative fault by the victim.

Talk to an Edwardsville Personal Injury Attorney

At Crossroad Legal, we aggressively represent injured motorists who need help paying their medical bills or covering the lost income from time out of work. After a serious injury, you can call a local metro-east personal injury attorney 24/7 and speak to a live person who will get you connected so that you can get the protection and representation you deserve. The sooner you act, the better it will be for your case.