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What You Should Know Before the Insurance Adjuster Calls

Law Offices of McCullough & Leboff, P.A.  June 20, 2024

Getting injured in an accident is a stressful and anxiety-inducing experience in and of itself. That’s what you might think in the hours and days following the accident. However, soon you may realize that what happens next—particularly, filing a claim and dealing with the insurance adjuster—can be just as bad as the accident itself.  

When you get a call and the person on the other side of the phone says they are an insurance adjuster, you should be thinking, “I should be careful now,” instead of, “This person will help me now!”  

Finding yourself injured and dealing with an insurance adjuster can be daunting, as the process can feel like walking through a minefield. At the Law Offices of McCullough & Leboff, P.A., we have walked these minefields with our clients numerous times and know where to expect “mines” when dealing with insurance adjusters.

Our personal injury attorneys serving Fort Lauderdale, Florida, have earned an incredible reputation for their professionalism, integrity, and ability to achieve favorable results for clients.  

Five Things to Know Before You Pick Up the Phone and Answer the Insurance Adjuster’s Call

If you have never filed an insurance claim before, you may believe that the insurance adjuster calls you because they are genuinely trying to help you obtain the compensation to which you are entitled. Spoiler alert: they aren’t. Here are some of the key things you should know before your first conversation with an adjuster.  

The Insurance Adjuster Is Not on Your Side 

When that phone rings and the insurance adjuster introduces themselves, remember this: The insurance adjuster is not your friend, nor do they care about your well-being, as harsh as it may sound.

They represent the insurance company, and their primary goal is to minimize the amount of money the insurance company has to pay out. This doesn't mean they're inherently bad people. They are just doing their job to protect their employer’s interests, not yours. After all, every insurance company is a profit-driven business, so don’t take it personally.  

Insurance adjusters are trained to ask questions in ways that might lead you to say something that could jeopardize your claim. They may seem sympathetic and friendly, but their loyalty lies with the insurance company. Always keep this in mind during your interactions. 

When the adjuster calls, you need to stay calm and polite, but also be cautious. Anything you say can be used to decrease the value of your claim. Acknowledge their questions but provide as little information as possible and stick to the facts. Remember, they are looking for ways to save the insurance company money, and that often comes at your expense. 

You Have No Obligation to Provide a Recorded Statement 

One of the first things an insurance adjuster might ask for during a phone conversation is a recorded statement. They may tell you that it's a standard procedure and necessary for you to get compensation. However, you are under no obligation to provide a recorded statement, and in most cases, it's better if you don't. 

Providing a recorded statement can be risky. You might inadvertently say something that could be used against you later. Even innocent mistakes or minor inconsistencies can be twisted to undermine your claim. Remember, you are not a trained professional in these matters, but the adjuster is. 

Instead, politely decline the request for a recorded statement. You can inform the adjuster that you will provide all necessary information in writing. This gives you more control over your words and helps ensure that nothing is taken out of context. 

You Have No Obligation to Give the Adjuster Access to Your Medical Records 

Your medical records are private and should be treated as such. An insurance adjuster may ask you to sign a release form so they can access your medical records. They might claim that this is necessary to process your claim, but you are not obligated to comply. 

Providing unrestricted access to your medical records can be detrimental to your claim. The adjuster may look for pre-existing conditions or other factors to argue that your injury is not as severe as you claim or that it wasn't caused by the incident in question.  

Instead, only provide the specific medical records that are directly relevant to your injury and claim. Consider consulting with a personal injury attorney before sharing any medical information. They can help you determine how to protect your privacy and avoid oversharing the best way.  

You Don't Have to Disclose More Than Necessary 

When speaking with an insurance adjuster, less is more. That’s the golden rule. You are not required to divulge every detail of your accident or injury. Providing too much information can give the adjuster ammunition to devalue your claim. 

Stick to the basics. Provide only the necessary information, such as the date and location of the accident and the general nature of your injuries. Avoid speculating or giving opinions. If you don't know the answer to a question, it's perfectly acceptable to say so. 

By limiting the information you provide, you reduce the risk of inadvertently harming your claim. Remember, the adjuster is trained to find weaknesses in your story. Protect yourself by being concise and to the point. 

You Don't Have to Sign Anything Before Speaking With Your Attorney

Insurance adjusters may present you with documents to sign, including medical releases, settlement offers, or other agreements. No matter what the adjuster says, remember that you are not obligated to sign anything without first consulting with your attorney. 

Signing documents without proper legal advice can have serious consequences. You might unknowingly waive your rights or agree to a settlement that is far less than what you deserve. An attorney can review any documents and ensure that your interests are protected. 

Before signing anything, take a step back and speak with an attorney at a personal injury law firm. They can guide you through the process, explain the implications of any documents, and help you make informed decisions.  

Let Us Help You Deal With the Insurance Adjuster

No one should have to navigate the insurance claims process alone. When an insurance company gets involved, things can get more complicated, though many people think the adjuster is there to help make things less complicated.  

At the Law Offices of McCullough & Leboff, P.A., we know the tricks insurance adjusters use when processing claims and are well-equipped to counter those tricks in pursuit of a fair resolution.  

Before speaking with the adjuster, consider contacting our law firm so we can help you protect your rights and navigate the claims process effectively. With an office in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, we serve injured victims throughout Pembroke Pines, Hollywood, Davie, Sunrise, Weston, and Plantation. Reach out today to set up a free case evaluation.