If you or a family member has been in a recent car accident, you may be dealing with the nightmare of making an insurance claim. Insurance agencies can be slow to respond, and they will often not offer claimants the settlement they deserve.
If you are dealing with Allstate Insurance, your frustration may be exacerbated because they are a large company with many clients. Allstate is staffed with highly qualified lawyers whose job it is to keep the company’s money in-house.
There are common mistakes people make when they are filing Allstate insurance claims. There are a few tips you should follow to avoid making those mistakes.
1. Not Making Insurance Payments on Time
When you do not make your insurance payments when they are due, Allstate can cancel your policy. If you live in a no-fault state in which you must rely on Personal Injury Protection insurance to pay your medical bills after an accident, you will be responsible for paying your accident bills.
If you live in a state where the at-fault driver must pay for any accident-related medical bills and you cause an accident, you will have to pay the medical bills of the person you hit out of pocket.
2. Admitting to Guilt at the Scene of The Accident
You should never tell the police that you think you caused an accident, even if you believe you did. There are certain to be factors of which you are unaware. For example, you may have T-boned a car that you did not see coming. However, there may have been cars illegally parked too close to the corner that obstructed your view.
Do not apologize to the police or the other driver. Do not say what you believe to be the cause of the accident. You should exchange information with the other driver, call the police, and answer basic questions about the accident.
3. Refusing Medical Treatment
If paramedics arrive at the scene of the accident, you should always let them check you out. If they tell you to go to the hospital with them, you should always go. If you refuse medical treatment at the scene of an accident, an insurance company may try to deny your claim.
You should go to the doctor even if you don’t think you are injured. Some injuries are not apparent right away. If your doctor tells you to have surgery, you should have it. Insurance companies will use any excuse not to give you the money you deserve.
4. Not Collecting Evidence
Collecting evidence at the scene of the accident is very important. Be sure to take pictures and get the names and numbers of witnesses who may have seen the crash. You should also ask for a copy of the police report.
Save all of your medical bills and receipts from prescription and non-prescription medications. No insurance company will ever take your word for the amount of money you have spent to recover from your injuries.
Ask your employer to write you a letter stating the amount of money you have lost as a result of your injuries. If you have been passed up for promotions because of missing work, that information needs to be included in the letter.
5. Missing Physical Therapy Appointments
Going to physical therapy is very important. If you miss too many appointments, your insurance claim may be denied, or may not be paid all the money you should get. If you end up having to go to court, juries will be very unsympathetic if you do not go to all of the physical therapy appointments that you are supposed to.
6. Saying Too Much to the Insurance Adjuster
The insurance adjuster works for Allstate and they want to keep your money in their pockets. They may try to ask you leading questions and try to make you take responsibility for the accident or say that your injuries were pre-existing.
They will also ask to record your call, but most attorneys will tell you not to let them. Tape-recorded conversations can be used as evidence against you.
7. Taking the First Settlement the Insurance Company Offers You
The first settlement an insurance company offers you will almost always be too low. Be sure to talk to a personal injury lawyer and get their opinion of the settlement offer. An injury attorney will usually get you a better deal.
Filing an insurance claim is a trying experience. If you know what to say and do, you are more likely to get a fair settlement.
8. Not Reporting the Claim Promptly
One of the critical steps after an incident is to report the claim to Allstate as soon as possible. Delaying this step can lead to several complications. The more time that passes, the harder it might be to remember specific details about the incident.
Moreover, it could give the impression that the claim isn’t a priority or isn’t serious. This can make the claims process more difficult and can sometimes even lead to the insurance company questioning the validity or urgency of the claim.
9. Overlooking Damage Details
In the aftermath of an incident, it might seem more intuitive to focus on the most evident damages. However, overlooking minor details or underlying issues can backfire.
It’s essential to have a comprehensive assessment of all damages, as there might be hidden or latent damages that aren’t immediately apparent. By not documenting every detail, you might miss out on the compensation needed to address those issues later on.
10. Ignoring Policy Details and Exclusions
Your insurance policy is a binding contract that specifies what is covered and what is not. Ignoring the details of this policy can lead to unexpected claim denials. Many policyholders make the mistake of assuming that every incident or damage type is covered.
However, most insurance policies have exclusions, limits, or conditions for coverage. Filing a claim without understanding these intricacies can result in delays, partial settlements, or outright rejections.