If you have been in an accident, you will likely need to file an insurance claim with either your own insurer or another person’s insurance company. If you got into a car accident with an uninsured motorist, for example, you may need to file an insurance claim with your own auto insurer. On the other hand, if you were injured on a negligent property owner’s premises, you may have to file a claim with their insurance company. Regardless of the insurer you are dealing with, it is important to know what is okay to give them, and what you should never provide.
What To Give The Insurance Company After An Accident
In some instances, you may be required to notify your own insurance company about an accident, as well as work with another party’s insurer. Most auto insurance policies in Georgia require that you notify your own insurance company after a car accident, even if it was minor and you were not at fault. If you sustained several losses during the same car accident, you may also have to file a claim with the negligent party’s insurer for damages.
Any time you speak with any insurance company, you may have to provide them with certain information. It is okay to provide the following:
- Basic details: You will need to provide the insurer with the details of the accident, but you should keep the information to a minimum. Tell them only that there was an accident, where the accident occurred, and the injuries and other losses you sustained. If the insurer asks for any other information, you should direct them to your personal injury lawyer.
- Photographs and video footage: After any accident it is important to take pictures and, if possible, video footage of the accident scene, what caused your accident, the injuries you sustained, and anything else relevant to the accident. You can give these to the insurance company to prove your claim.
- Your medical documents: When proving your claim to the insurance company, you must prove the full amount of damages you sustained, which includes your medical treatment. You should submit the medical records to the insurance company to prove how much your treatment is costing you.
- The accident report: Just as you should always take pictures of the accident scene, you should also always file a report. A report can come in the form of an accident report written and filed by law enforcement after a car crash, or an incident report if you were hurt on the property of a business. Regardless of what type of report applies to your case, provide the insurance company with a copy.
The above are just a few items that you may have to give your insurance company after an accident. Before submitting any information, you should always have a personal injury lawyer review it to ensure you are not hurting your case by giving it to the insurer.
What Not To Give The Insurance Company After An Accident
Just as there is certain information you should give the insurance company after an accident, there are also specific things you should not provide. These include:
- Admission of fault: You should never say anything to the insurer that indicates you were even partly at fault for an accident. They will use this against you to reduce, deny, or delay the full amount of damages you deserve. Even saying you are sorry the accident happened at all will be taken as an admission of guilt, so never apologize to the insurer or at the scene.
- Voluntary information: Directly answer any question the insurance company asks you about the accident, but do not volunteer information, particularly if you are unsure of the answer. Do not guess or speculate. Instead, stick to the facts and if you are unsure, simply say you do not know.
- Medical release: A personal injury lawyer can advise on whether you are legally obligated to sign a medical release, but in many cases you are not. A medical release gives the insurer access to your medical records, which they will use against you.
- Recorded statements: Never allow an insurance company to record your statements. They will use your own words against you in the future to deny or reduce your claim.
A personal injury lawyer will ensure you do not provide anything to the insurer that will hurt your case.
Call Our Personal Injury Lawyers In Atlanta Before Speaking To The Insurer
Insurance companies are notoriously difficult to deal with, and it can be difficult to know what you should and should not provide them with after an accident. At MG Law, our Atlanta personal injury lawyers have the necessary experience working with insurance companies, and obtaining the fair settlement accident victims deserve. We want to put that experience to work for you. Call us today at 404-982-4219 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.