Prepare for the Other Driver’s Insurance Company to Call

Prepare for the Other Driver’s Insurance Company to Call

An automobile accident is always an unpleasant experience, no matter the circumstances under which it occurs. This can be especially true if there’s any sort of argument over who was at fault in the accident. Dealing with your own insurance company can be enough of a challenge, but the difficulty can be compounded if you think you might have to deal with the other driver’s insurance.

There’s no way to completely smooth over the experience of a car accident, but you can take a lot of the stress out of it simply by being prepared. You should know what your rights are, legally speaking, and what you are and are not required to do. Below, we’ll discuss a few of the ways you can mitigate the stress on yourself. Read on to learn how to prepare for the other driver’s insurance company to call.

Know That You Are Not Required to Speak with the Other Insurance Company

It goes without saying that, after an accident has taken place, you must report it to the proper authorities. This includes your own insurance company when you file a claim to recoup some of the damage done to your vehicle. However, there is no law compelling you to speak to the other driver’s insurance company, and, indeed, in most cases, it’s not a good idea to do so.

A car accident is a stressful experience, and you might be tempted to try to get it over with by saying whatever you feel you need to, to make it go away. But odds are that you’re not an expert in insurance, and the company that’s contacting you knows that. They’ll take advantage of the fact that you’re shaken and stressed, as well as the fact that you’re unlikely to be an expert in matters regarding car insurance. Remember that their motivation is always to save as much money as they can for their company. If they can get out of paying a claim, they will.

It’s possible the other driver’s insurance company will try to manipulate or trick you into admitting fault for the accident, whether that’s the truth or not. Their agents are well-trained to do this, which is why it’s best to avoid speaking with them entirely.

Remember That You Don’t Know Everything About the Situation

It’s easy enough to assume that if you simply recount the experience as it occurred, you’ll be in the clear. After all, why would you get yourself into any trouble if you just tell the insurance company the truth about what happened? Well, since insurance companies are trained to look for any sort of discrepancies in your story, even being perfectly forthright and truthful over the phone can end up being damaging for you.

This is because, even though you were involved in the accident, you’re not actually aware of everything that happened. That is to say, you’re not a doctor, a lawyer, nor an expert in the mechanics of automobile accidents. You don’t necessarily know all the details of the laws regarding the accident. Nor are you likely to be fully aware of the medical realities that have ensued from the accident.

That’s why, no matter how well-intentioned you may be, communicating directly with the other driver’s insurance company isn’t likely in your best interests.

The Insurance Company Will Try to Trip You Up

Car accidents can be life-changing events, but they happen quickly and are incredibly chaotic. After the accident has occurred, you’ll probably be asked to repeat the story over and over, by the police, by your own insurance company, and by other authorities who want to know exactly what took place. The other driver’s insurance company, having a vested interest in getting out of paying any claims, will go out of their way to try to find discrepancies in the stories you tell so that they can make you look bad.

It would be very surprising if every retelling of the story of the accident was completely consistent, because of the chaos and suddenness of the experience. Nevertheless, the insurance company will point out any details that are missed or changed in an effort to discredit you in front of a judge. This might sound cynical, but it’s simply how insurance companies operate. Their first consideration will always be their own finances.

Know When You Need a Lawyer

Because the process of dealing with insurance companies after a car accident is so complicated, and because these companies will specifically try to take advantage of you while you’re vulnerable, your best bet might be to contact a lawyer.

You won’t necessarily need a lawyer after every fender-bender, but if the accident was more severe, it’s a good idea to at least consult with a qualified attorney. An attorney is likely to be required if someone was seriously injured or killed in the accident, or if the accident rendered you unable to work and collect an income.

The more parties involved in the accident, the more likely it is you’ll need to secure the services of a qualified attorney. In short, if there are any sort of complications to the situation, you should at least speak with an attorney and ask for their advice. Contact a firm such as Warren Allen to discuss your options regarding representation.

Remember the Rules Will Vary from State to State

Another reason to leave your situation in the hands of an attorney is that the rules tend to be different from state to state. We’ve mentioned that you can’t be legally compelled to talk with the other driver’s insurance company, but this may be different if you live in a no-fault state or if the other driver is simply refusing to talk to their own insurance company. In either case, it’s still a good idea to consult with a qualified attorney before doing anything. In this way, you’ll minimize your chances of being tricked by an unscrupulous insurance company and maximize your chances of getting your own claim paid.

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