If you need help filing an insurance claim or disputing a rejected claim after a car accident, The Sevey Law Firm can help. After an accident caused by someone else, you have the right to recover financial compensation to pay for your injuries and expenses, usually by filing a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance. However, all insurers have a goal of paying as little as possible to resolve accident claims. This is how insurance companies maximize their profits, and they will frequently take measures designed to reduce the values of claims filed by accident victims.
If you suffered severe injuries or your loved one was killed in an accident in the greater Roseville area, do not try to deal with an insurance company on your own. You should not say anything to an insurer until you have legal representation.
The Sevey Law Firm can handle all phone calls from insurance companies on your behalf and negotiate for a fair and full settlement to your case. We can help you whether you are just starting your claim process or your claim has already been rejected. You can have our attorneys review your case and answer all of your legal questions when you call (916) 788-7100 or complete an online contact form to set up a free consultation.
First-Party Insurance Claims
When a person files a claim with their own insurance company, it is considered a first-party claim. Many people assume that they will face less resistance in these situations since they are paying customers, but insurance companies routinely take advantage of this belief to pay victims much less than what they are entitled to.
In some cases, insurance companies will offer lump-sum settlements to victims to resolve their cases. Even when the amounts offered seem generous to a victim, they quickly learn that the settlements will not be enough to cover all of the future costs, which victims then must pay out of their own pockets. Even when a victim suspects, usually correctly, that they are receiving a lowball offer, many are afraid to try and demand more.
Insurance companies often take the same tactic of having a representative contact a victim and express immediate concern as well as a willingness to make sure the victim is taken care. Many of these agents will specifically tell victims that they do not need to hire a lawyer for their case and they will be able to keep more money for themselves without hiring a lawyer.
This disingenuous logic often leads to seemingly casual conversations in which victims are asked to recall their crashes, but the questions asked are usually designed to elicit damaging statements from victims in which they unknowingly admit to their own negligence contributing to accidents, which can prevent you from collecting compensation. You should always avoid discussing your crash with any person until you have an attorney.
Third-Party Insurance Claims
Many car accidents result in people filing claims with the insurance companies representing the negligent drivers. A claim filed with an insurer by a person who is not the policyholder is called a third-party claim.
People who file third-party claims are subject to many of the same challenges that individuals face when dealing with insurance companies in first-party claims. Again, an insurer will almost always contact the victim and seem very friendly while trying to extort some kind of damaging information.
With a third party claim, the insurance company is much more likely to deny liability. When the cause of an accident is a subject of dispute, the insurer will very likely take the position that the driver they represent was not at fault.
If they are unable to deny liability entirely, the insurance company may try to pin at least some portion of the liability on you, using the same tactics already discussed. Remember that California is a pure comparative fault state, so a person can recover damages in a personal injury action even when they were primarily at fault.
What Can a Lawyer Do?
A lawyer can help with every aspect of filing a claim with insurance, whether it is a first-party or third-party claim.
The process of successfully filing a claim can be complicated and confusing. A lawyer can help you gather all the necessary evidence, properly fill out all the correct forms, and file them in the right place and on time. A lawyer can ensure you don’t make any errors during this initial process, since even one mistake can cause your claim to be delayed or denied.
If you are offered less money than you think you should have been, or if your claim is denied altogether, a lawyer can investigate the reason for the denial and negotiate for the full amount of compensation you deserve.
Normally, these negotiations will be enough to win you the compensation you need, since insurance companies rarely want to spend the time and money required to go to court. However, if you are still unable to get the compensation you require during negotiations, a lawyer can help you pursue a lawsuit against the at-fault party and their insurance company.
Did you sustain catastrophic injuries or was your loved one killed in a car crash in Roseville? Contact The Sevey Law Firm before you try to file an insurance claim on your own. We can ensure that you don’t make any incriminating statements, and can help fight back if your claim is wrongfully denied.
Our firm’s record of success includes a $14.5 million verdict in a case in which the insurance company originally offered only $50,000 to settle. Call (916) 788-7100 or contact us online to have our attorneys provide an honest and thorough evaluation of your case during a free consultation.