Once a car accident happens, you are in a new world with rules and facts you do not know.  Often, you will be contacted by your insurance company and the other driver’s insurance company.  Here are some tips to help you navigate this situation.

Whose Side is The Insurance Company On?

First, know the other driver’s insurance company is not on your team or your side.  They do not care about you or what you are going through. They are trying to close your claim as quickly and cheaply as possible.  They are not interested in your injuries or how you are doing. They ask for this information only so they can evaluate your claim and figure out how to best quickly and cheaply close your case.  

Typically, the insurance adjusters you will speak with attempt a few different strategies.  Some try and be your friend and pretend to care and to be looking out for you. They are not. They want you to trust them so they can quickly and cheaply close your case. Some insurance people ignore you or treat you with some level of hostility.  This strategy is designed to make things more stressful, frustrating, and difficult for you so you again close your case fast and cheap.  

Deadlines For Filing a Claim

Second, if you are injured, in Tennessee, you have one year from the date of your accident to file a lawsuit.  If a year goes by and you do not file a lawsuit, you lose your claim forever. However, before that year is up, there is no need to rush to settle.  The insurance company cannot close your case. So take your time and go to the doctor appointments and get feeling better. Do not let the insurance company rush you, you have time.

Get a Copy of the Accident Report

Lastly, obtain a copy of the accident report and try and stay calm when speaking with the insurance company.  Remember anything you say will be used against you. If you do speak with the insurance company stick to the facts.  They may try and bend the facts or get you to agree to minor changes in what happened. These small changes can lead to big problems.  So try and stay calm and stick to your memory of the event.

Joe Weir
Helping personal injury victims win their case and lose their stress
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