“How will the insurance company and their defense attorneys treat me after I make a claim?” As a personal injury attorney, I get this question all the time. It is such an important question, that even when a potential client doesn’t ask, I explain it anyway. Why? Because no one should go down the path of litigation without understanding that it is an adversarial process.
When you make a claim against an insured after a car accident, slip and fall accident, dog bite, product liability, or any other personal injury accident, you must be prepared to be attacked. The insurance company’s adjusters, investigators and attorneys, will try everything to make you look like the villain. They will massage and distort facts to paint you as responsible for your own injuries. They do this even when it is clear their policy holder caused the accident, and your harm.
How Do Insurance Companies Defend Against Personal Injury Claims?
Immediately after an accident, the insurance company for the at-fault party jumps into action to mount an aggressive defense. An adjuster will try relentlessly to get a recorded statement from you, before you hire a personal injury attorney. YOU SHOULD NEVER AGREE TO DO THIS! The purpose of recorded statements is to try to cast your version of the events surrounding the incident, in stone. Experienced adjusters purposely phrase questions in inherently confusing and misleading ways. They also capitalize on the fact that the victims they are interviewing are in a lot of pain or under the influence of pain medication. Either of these conditions can alter an injured person’s ability to recall facts and answer questions thoroughly. As a result, things said in recorded statements often come back to haunt victims with very legitimate cases.
The Defense will also try to claim your injury was not caused by the accident, but was a pre-existing condition. This is done in almost every case, particularly those involving back and neck injuries. For this reason it is imperative that you be honest with your attorney when you first meet with him. Tell him if you have ever had any complaints about the same part of the body injured in your accident. If so, include whether or not you ever received treatment for it, and by which doctor. The Defense will subpoena all your past medical and health insurance records. This fishing expedition is done to find even a single notation in a medical record somewhere that can be used against you.
The Insurance Company Will Come Up With It’s Own Version of the Accident
Don’t be surprised if the Defense presents some absurd theory where you are at-fault for the accident. The insurance industry has unlimited funds. It spends thousands of dollars handsomely paying so-called experts to formulate and express whatever theory and opinion is necessary to support it’s position. I am amazed by how many obviously legitimate cases are contested by the Defense based upon outrageous theories devised by these bought-and-paid for experts. In order to make their theory work, these experts will even contradict independent eye witness accounts about how an accident happened.
How does the Defense get away with this? They assume the 12 Jurors who eventually hear the case will be swayed by these “experts,” even when their conclusions are ridiculous and based on dubious information. Jurors are often biased by nonsense on TV about frivolous claims and “run away” Verdicts. The Defense plays on Jurors’ skepticism and rely on them to look for holes in the victim’s case. By giving them something to sink their teeth into, no matter how ludicrous it is, some Jurors will consider it.
It is important for victims to understand all this when filing a personal injury claim. You can not have thin skin because the defense will pick apart your version of the accident, question your injuries, claim you were at-fault, and paint you as greedy. Given all this, it is critical to seek legal advice before even speaking to the insurance adjuster.
How a Long Beach Personal Injury Attorney Can Help You
Your Injuries Are Personal to Me
Injury cases sometimes take years to resolve and an accident victim must be prepared for what the Defense throws at them. The best way to deal with these tactics is to hire a qualified Personal Injury Attorney to represent your interests from the beginning. Unrepresented accident victims are at an extreme disadvantage against powerful insurance companies.
For over 30 years I have been dedicated to representing victims of personal injury accidents. I take your injuries personally and will handle every aspect of your case to make sure you receive the maximum compensation you deserve.
Call the Law Office of Michael D. Waks at 888-394-1174 or use the convenient online contact form to schedule a free consultation and learn how I can help you. You will be under no obligation and you will never pay any money unless you recover compensation for your losses.
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