The insurance company is not your friend. Their goal of saving money is at direct odds with your goal of getting a fair settlement for your injuries. That’s why it’s crucial that every driver know the one insurance company truck that could cost you your settlement!
For the Record
The insurance companies use a process called “recorded statements” to collect testimony about the crash. In many cases, an insurance adjuster may ask you to make a statement when you initially report the call. If this happens, politely refuse and try to end the call as soon as possible. Remember that you have no obligation to provide a recorded statement without your attorney present.
A recorded statement will almost never benefit your case. More often, it results in either a lower settlement offer or a shift in fault. Remember that Virginia uses a system of pure contributory negligence. If the insurance company determines that you’re even 1% responsible for the crash, you cannot recover any damages.
What’s the Harm?
A recorded statement requires extremely precise wording. If you aren’t careful, a seemingly off-hand comment could be used to justify a lower settlement or leave you unable to recover any damages.
For example, you report your crash to the insurance company and they ask you to describe the events as they happened. You say, “They came out of nowhere and t-boned me, I didn’t even see them coming.” In this scenario, the insurance company may use the statement, “I didn’t even see them coming” to claim the crash could have been prevented if you were paying attention.
Recorded statements like these can turn an otherwise straightforward case, into a prolonged and difficult legal battle. For that reason, it’s almost always better to limit your interactions with the insurance company and contact an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible!
To schedule a free consultation with an experienced Virginia car accident attorney from Portner & Shure, P.A., don’t hesitate to call (855) 954-4141 or send us an email.