Q: I was injured in a collision with a truck. Should I speak with the insurance company before contacting an attorney?
When you’ve been injured in a truck accident, your first thought may be to contact the driver’s insurance company in order to determine what it will offer. However, you won’t know if the insurance company’s offer is fair unless you speak with an attorney first.
Your Insurance Company
Your own automobile insurance policy requires you to promptly notify your insurance company in the event of an accident, so it can investigate and identify its own exposure to liability. Should you fail to do so, your insurance company may try to use this oversight as an excuse to deny your claim.
While you should inform your insurance company about the accident, you only need to provide factual information such as the date and time of the collision, the location, and the names and addresses of any other parties involved. You should avoid giving your insurance company a recorded statement until you have consulted an attorney.
The Truck Driver’s Insurance Company
If the truck driver’s insurance company wishes to speak with you, you should decline to give a statement until you have spoken with an attorney. You are not obligated to provide a statement, and doing so may jeopardize your claim.
After your accident, you could be in shock, confused, or under the influence of pain medication. Couple that condition with confusing questions from insurance agents and adjusters who are looking for any excuse to deny your claim, and you can see why giving a recorded statement is a mistake. It’s okay to tell the insurance company representative about the damage to your vehicle and its location, but you should never discuss the details of the accident, including how and why it happened.
Your Insurance Claim
Unless you have extensive experience in evaluating vehicle accident claims, you’re unlikely to know whether or not an insurance company’s offer is fair. Speaking with an attorney first will provide a better understanding of your case, and the initial consultation is typically free.
You may want the attorney to handle all of the insurance company negotiations on your behalf. However, even if you decide to deal with the insurance companies yourself, you’ll be much better prepared to do so after speaking with an attorney. To discuss your claim, contact the law offices of Steve M. Lee, P.C., by using the form on this page.