How Insurance Companies Investigate Car Accidents
If you have ever been involved in a car accident, then you are probably familiar with the process of filing a claim. This experience can, however, be overwhelming to first time accident victims, so we’ve included a brief breakdown of how insurance companies typically go about investigating claims and how that process can affect your recovery. To learn more, please reach out to one of our dedicated Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers today.
No-Fault Auto Insurance
Florida is a no-fault auto insurance state, which means that car accident victims typically must go through their own insurers when attempting to recover compensation after a crash. The only exceptions to this rule are when a driver’s medical bills exceed a certain limit, or when an injury qualifies as serious under Florida law. Otherwise, accident victims won’t be allowed to step outside of the no-fault system, which in turn, means that their case will go through their insurance company, which will be tasked with investigating the claim and settling upon an award.
Before approving or denying a claim, car insurance companies conduct thorough investigation into a claimant’s collision. This process usually involves:
- An interview with an adjuster, who will collect a statement from the claimant regarding his or her recollection of the accident;
- A visit to the scene of the accident;
- An inspection of the damaged vehicles;
- A review of the claimant’s accident-related medical records;
- A background check; and
- Records of the driver’s cell phone and social media usage.
While insurers are primarily interested in what happened on the day in question (the date of the accident) when looking for evidence of the cause and severity of a crash, they are more than willing to look at things that happened after the accident. By perusing social media accounts, for instance, insurers often try to dispute claims made by injured parties. If, for example, an injured party is tagged in a photo at an event, the insurer may try to claim that the injury is not as severe as is being claimed. Unfortunately, this evidence is often taken out of context in an attempt to lower a settlement award.
How a Car Accident Lawyer Can Help You
Most insurance companies are out to save money, so it is not uncommon for a Florida accident victim to find him or herself with unfairly low settlement offers and unscrupulous investigation methods. An experienced attorney can help a claimant navigate the aftermath of a car accident by conducting a separate investigation into the cause of an accident, negotiating on the injured party’s behalf, and keeping an eye out for unfair or bad faith insurance practices.
Were You Involved in a Florida Car Crash?
At Boone & Davis, our Florida car accident lawyers are dedicated to helping accident victims obtain the compensation they are owed after an accident, whether from the at-fault driver or the injured party’s own insurer. For help pursuing your own claim, give us a call at 954-566-9919 or visit us online and fill out one of our online contact forms.