6 Tips for Dealing with Insurance Adjusters

When you file a claim with your insurance company, they may want to investigate what happened before they make any sort of payment. They do this to help reduce the risk of insurance fraud and to lower the amount they have to pay out. Their investigation is performed by someone known as an insurance adjuster who will come out and talk with you about what happened and look at the damage that is involved with the claim. While this is a fairly routine process, it is not something that should be taken lightly, as it can have a huge impact on the claim itself. Before working with an insurance adjuster, make sure you read through these tips:

The Adjuster is NOT Working for You!

This is likely the most important tip to keep in mind. While the adjuster will undoubtedly be very nice, and even act like he is concerned with helping you maximize your claim, that is not the case. Insurance adjusters work for the insurance company and their job is to try to minimize the claim amount. Always keep this in mind so you understand their motives.

Don’t Volunteer Information

While you will have to answer questions and provide information, you don’t have to give more than they ask for. Anything extra that you say can really only be used to hurt your claim. Keep in mind that you have already filed the claim and let them know the details of the event, anything further could potentially contradict what you already said (even if it wasn’t on purpose) or otherwise cause problems.

Don’t Let Adjusters Minimize Values

Another tactic used by insurance adjusters is trying to downplay the value of a particular item or event. For example, they may imply that having to miss a few weeks of work isn’t going to be worth very much in a claim. This type of comment is meant to set the tone for a smaller settlement agreement than you are entitled to. Don’t take these types of comments seriously, and always be ready to fight for what you are entitled to.

Listen to the Phrasing of Questions

Insurance adjusters may phrase their questions or comments in such a way as to try to trip you up when you answer. While this can often be explained away, it can put you “off balance” and lead to other mistakes. Additionally, it can give the adjuster ammunition when approaching a potential lawsuit, should it come to that.

Never Settle Fast

Another tactic used by insurance adjusters is to try to settle with the client as soon as possible. This is especially common on large or particularly strong cases. While settling an insurance claim is a good idea in some situations, it is never something to be rushed into. Even if the adjuster claims that this is a one time offer, you should reject it so you can really think it through and speak with an attorney about your situation.

Work with an Attorney

Having an attorney working on your case can give you practical advice about your exact situation. This can help you get through any type of meeting with your insurance adjuster without making any mistakes or running into other problems. If you have filed an insurance claim, or you have had an accident and need to file a claim, make sure you contact us to set up a consultation today.

John M. Totten