Is Filing a Claim an Easy Process?
This would actually depend on the facts of the case.
If the liability was clear, meaning it was clearly the other person’s fault so there was no real dispute about who caused the injury, and the victim had straightforward injuries, then it would be easy to establish to file a claim.
The claim, at least from the lawyer’s standpoint, could be pretty simple. It would involve allowing the client fully recover from his or her injuries, gathering copies of medical records and bills, sending those to the insurance company and settling the case. There are other situations where the victim may have a really complicated medical course after an injury.
Don’t Try to Settle Your Claim Too Quickly
It is important to remember that a person should never settle a personal injury case until they know they are completely healed from their injuries, or they have a good idea of how impaired they may be in the future. Once an injury case is settled, it is settled forever.
A personal injury victim never wants to be in a situation where they settled a case too soon and found out later that their injuries were more significant than they originally thought.
If You Have to Give a Statement to The Other Party’s Insurance Company, Do It with Your Attorney Present.
A person is not “required” to give a statement to the other insurance company, but the insurance company will not usually make any type of a settlement offer on the case unless one is given.
I always tell my clients that if they have not yet given a recorded statement to the insurance company, then it is fine to do so, but I would just like to be on the phone when the statement is taken. I can then make sure there is clear communication occurring between the insurance company and my client.
I have listened in on many recorded statements, and reviewed the written transcripts of many more. I have not really seen many examples of an insurance company trying to take advantage of the person being interviewed. The statements really seem to simply be an attempt by the insurance company to gather information about the claim as close in time to the incident as possible.
There are definitely situations where insurance companies do try to take advantage of people during those recorded statements. It is not uncommon for a client to come in and hire me after they have already given a recorded statement to the insurance company. In this case we simply request a copy of the statement so we could have it for future use.
You Probably Have to Repay the Medical Bills That Were Paid by Your Health Insurance
A lot of people do not realize this. This requirement exists for almost everybody if the medical bills are paid by another source, usually like health insurance, Medicare, Medicaid or any other type of employee benefit program. Most people do not read the paperwork they receive from their employer about their health insurance, but usually an employee has contractually agreed to reimburse any medical expenses recovered through a personal injury lawsuit.
Almost every case involves working closely with the health insurer, Medicare or Medicaid to find out how much was actually paid for the medical expense so they can be reimbursed at the end of the case. If a lawyer or the client fail to do honor this reimbursement, they are at risk of being sued.
The lawyer could be sued for failing to honor those obligations, so this is actually a very important part of the case. The one thing that a personal injury lawyer is often able to do is work reductions with those health insurers. This means the health insurer agrees to accept less than they actually paid out for the expenses. Any savings like this go directly to injured person. This is another value that a lawyer could bring because often if a lawyer was not involved in the case, Medicare or the health insurer would demand that the person repay what had been paid out in full.
For more information on Giving A Statement To The Insurance Company, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling (817) 926-1003 today.
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