If your car sustains damages in an accident, your insurance provider has a responsibility to help you cover some or all of the repair costs. While this is the sole purpose of insurance, many insurance companies want to avoid compensating their customers fairly to bolster their own profit margins. In this article, we provide helpful tips for how to go about dealing with an insurance adjuster after a car accident.
Research the Cost to Repair Your Vehicle
To determine whether or not your insurance provider is offering fair payments, you must research exactly how much it will cost to repair your car. The best way to do this is to ask several mechanics for cost estimates.
When going into negotiations with an insurance adjuster, you must be prepared. Ask the adjuster to explain their reasoning for the claim they offered and have the estimate you received from your mechanic available to refer to in a fair counter-proposal.
Prepare a Response to the Betterment Argument
The betterment argument is when your insurance provider offers less than the full cost of repairs because those repairs will ultimately increase the value of your car. To refute this argument, you may require a mechanic’s expertise in proving that the repairs will not increase your vehicle’s value.
Be Ready for a Write-Off
When you are involved in a crash that severely damages your vehicle, you may receive a write-off from your insurance company. A write-off means the cost of repairs exceeds the actual value of your car. Every state handles these “total loss” situations differently, so it is best to retain skilled legal counsel when you receive a write-off to ensure you are being treated fairly.
Get Your Final Agreement in Writing
Once you and your insurance company have completed negotiations and reached a fair agreement, make sure it is in writing. Create a document that includes the amount of the settlement (how much your insurance provider is offering) and how the money should be used (for example, listing specific repairs).
Call a Car Accident Attorney When Working with Insurance Adjusters
Car accidents are scary, inconvenient, and costly. Dealing with an insurance adjuster can be frustrating, but it is, unfortunately, a necessary part of recovering financially from a collision.
A knowledgeable lawyer can help you navigate your next steps after a car accident, including dealing with insurance adjusters. Contact the Law Office of David E. Gordon to schedule a free consultation.