Many people wonder if they really have to notify the insurance company after a car accident, regardless of whether or not they sustain injuries. Below, we will discuss whether you need to or not as well as what to tell the insurance company’s adjuster when reporting.
Do I need to call my insurance company after an accident?
Yes, you will need to contact your insurance company after every accident. If you do not report the accident to your insurance company, it may drop your coverage because you violated your contract.
Limit your comments to basic facts such as where the accident occurred, what time it happened, and who was involved. Do not offer any opinions on how the accident happened, or why.
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Do I need to call the at-fault driver’s insurer?
It is the other driver’s responsibility to report the accident to his insurance company. This helps you because it reduces the chances that the insurance company will be able to use an innocent comment you make during the report against you. If an insurance adjuster later calls you, politely decline to answer her questions.
What do I have to tell the insurance company?
You are most likely contractually obligated to cooperate with your own insurance company, meaning you will need to answer some basic questions such as when and where the accident occurred. However, you are under no obligation to answer any questions from the other insurance company about the accident or your history.
If you sustained injuries in the accident, the other driver’s insurance company will need access to your medical records. Make sure you only give the company access to injury records pertaining to the accident. For help limiting access, call Bressman Law.
What if someone from the insurance company starts asking me questions?
An adjuster from the other driver’s insurance company will most likely try to ask you questions about the accident, including how it happened, your injuries, your treatment, and past health history. Answering any of these questions could jeopardize your case. Remember, it is looking for a reason to pay you less.
The best way to handle this situation is to politely but firmly tell the adjuster you are not comfortable giving her that information yet. Only state things about which you are completely sure, e.g., I have neck pain and my arm is broken.
Later, when you know the full extent of your injuries, you can provide the adjuster with medical records discussed in the above section.
If the adjuster continues to press you for a statement, an auto accident attorney can stop the calls. Your attorney will provide the insurance company with the documents it needs while protecting your best interests.
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Should I agree to a recorded statement?
In short, no. It is never a good idea to provide a recorded statement to the insurance company. It cannot help your case, but the company can use it against you as proof you were liable in the accident or had a pre-existing injury.
Being as polite as possible, simply tell them you are not comfortable offering a recorded statement. You can add that you will ensure they receive all written documents necessary to approve your claim. If you have any questions about how to submit written documentation of your injuries, medical treatment and property damage, attorney David Bressman can help.
Can Bressman Law help me?
In Ohio, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury claim is two years. For this reason, it is important to ensure you get started on your claim as soon as possible. Call attorney David Bressman for help.