Many people think that their insurance company has their own best interests in mind. Everyone has seen the commercials where the companies market themselves as “good neighbors” and promise you that your claim will be in “good hands” in the event that you ever need the services that you pay for, but insurance companies never live up to these lofty goals. As soon as you make a claim, your friendly neighborhood adjuster turns into a high-pressure salesman who wants you to sign your life away for a few hundred dollars. Too many people fall for this trap, but it can be easily avoided by speaking to an attorney if you are injured in an accident.
A 1999 study by the Insurance Research Council found that accident victims that hired attorneys received more money than victims who did not. This means that consulting an attorney is the intelligent thing to do even if you only think you are injured a little. In many cases, the injuries may not be readily apparent at the time of the accident, and you may need additional medical care. Some people may think they have neck or back pain that will go away and settle early only to find out months later that they have a more serious injury to their spine that may even require surgery in the future.
Even if your first instinct is to settle your claim with the insurance company as soon as possible and get on with your life; don’t. The internet is full of horror stories about people’s interactions with their insurance companies. (You can find a few at https://www.consumeraffairs.com/insurance/geico.htm) Most of these stories deal with less serious problems, but they provide a good indication of how insurance companies treat their customers. Getting a lawyer means that you will have an advocate who actually does have your best interest in mind to help you stand up to the insurance companies and give you a better chance of recovering the amount that your claim is worth.
Just like any other company, insurance companies are in business to make money. The government mandates insurance for several things (car insurance, health insurance, etc.), so the insurance companies have a steady source of income. The only problem is, once the premiums for this insurance are paid in, the insurance companies want to hold on to as much of the money as they can for as long as they can.
Insurance companies may make several cents of profit off of every dollar of premiums that come in, but every dollar they can avoid paying out to someone who makes a claim is pure profit for them. The strength of their bottom line is a powerful motivator for insurance companies to offer the absolute minimum that they think their customers will accept in settlement for their claim, and their individual customers are ill-equipped to negotiate settlements for themselves. Many insurance companies will offer little to nothing hoping that an injured person will either take the bottom dollar or just give up altogether.
Think about this the next time your insurance company “just needs you to sign a few papers” after you make a claim: they have lawyers that can justify every bad thing they do to you. Shouldn’t you have a lawyer to help you stand up to them?
At Faulkner Law Offices, we take our client advocacy very seriously and understand the kind of life interruption that being injured by another can cause. We are very experienced in dealing with insurance companies and adjusters to get results for our client. When people sign up with us, we treat them like family because everyone needs to be treated with dignity and respect in what can be a difficult legal process. If you, or someone you know, has been injured by the negligent or wrongful conduct of another, contact Faulkner Law Offices in Bakersfield so that we can help right away. Call Us at: (661) 327-0601