“How do you handle the insurance adjuster when a personal injury or wrongful death occurs? The police, paramedics and firefighters respond to the emergency and address the situation. In most cases, an insurance company is notified of a personal injury or wrongful death claim within 24 hours. The insurance company immediately opens a “claim file” and assigns a person to handle the claim. This person is called an insurance adjuster. The insurance adjuster does not work for you. The insurance adjuster is the agent of the insurance company and speaks and acts for the insurance company. Let me give you some do’s and don’ts on how to handle and communicate with an insurance adjuster. This article is to help you handle health insurance adjusters, disability claim adjusters, and insurance adjuster not associated with your personal injury or wrongful death claims.” Mike Burman.
First Contact with the Adjuster
Introduce yourself and exchange basic contact information. Be sure to get the claim number to the adjuster’s claim file.
If the adjuster requests your recorded statement or asks you to release your medical records, tell the adjuster you would like more information about what the adjuster intends to do in your claim. Kindly advise the adjuster you need more time before you give a statement. Any statement you give the adjuster is usually recorded and binds you to the words you use. There are times to give a statement, and times you want to decline giving a statement. Contact me if you need help sorting this out.
Keep Things Organized
Keep all your paperwork organized in files, and write down all your conversation with the adjuster. Keep the adjuster updated by sending any relevant documentation. This maintains contact with the adjuster and helps the adjuster stay on top of your claim.
Getting the Result You Want
The adjuster, by law, must act in good faith to settle your claim honestly and free of misrepresentation. But, you and the adjuster will probably have differing ideas of how things should be settled, so do not ever, ever, ever get mad at an insurance adjuster. It is a waste of time and hurts your chances to resolve your claim.
The adjuster wants to close out your claim for as little money as possible and as quickly as possible. But the adjuster must have your approval and signature to close out a claim. So, you want to give the adjuster what the adjuster is looking for and to do that….ASK! Ask lots of questions and be patient with the adjuster. If an adjuster is rude, ask the adjuster if you have said something wrong, that you want to resolve this quickly and need the adjuster to explain. Above all else, document your claim. Nothing moves an adjuster faster than strong documentation.