Insurance coverage is one of the most important aspects of a personal injury case. Unfortunately, very few attorneys talk about it because there are so many different things that can happen. To make matters worse, insurance is notoriously difficult to explain in simple terms, and it is chock full of jargon.
Nevertheless, having a basic understanding of how insurance works and how it can implicate a personal injury case is essential. The personal injury lawyers at Gilman & Bedigian are here to help.
Insurance is basically a financial gamble. Every month, you agree to pay what is called a premium. In return, your insurance company agrees to pay the costs of certain incidents. The type and extent of those incidents is your insurance coverage and is outlined in your insurance policy.
Over the course of your lifetime, you are almost guaranteed to pay more in premiums than you would pay to cover the costs of covered incidents. Nevertheless, the financial loss is more than made up for by the peace of mind that insured people feel over not having to worry about the potential of suddenly having to pay thousands of dollars in damages.
What Happens After an Accident
If you get hurt in an accident – whether it is a car accident or some other incident where you get hurt because someone else was being negligent – the first step is to get medical attention.
After that, though, insurance becomes a prominent figure in your recovery. You will need to file an insurance claim with either your insurance company (a first-party claim) or with the company that represents the party that hurt you (a third-party claim). Which type of claim will depend on:
- The extent of your injuries
- Whether it was you or the other person who was at fault
- Particular circumstances of the accident
The Claims Process
The claims process begins with notifying the insurance company – whether your own or the other person's – about the incident. This often needs to be done within 24 hours.
The insurance company will then investigate what happened. This often includes an independent medical examination to determine the extent of your injuries, as well as interviewing witnesses, reviewing police reports, or conducting inspections of implicated or damaged property.
When the investigation is over, the insurance company will either deny your claim or make an initial settlement offer to cover the costs of the accident.
How the Personal Injury Lawyers at Gilman & Bedigian Can Help
If your insurance claim was denied, you can appeal the denial and argue why your losses should be covered. On the other hand, if you get an initial settlement offer, it is often well below what you really deserve to receive.
In either case, simply having a personal injury attorney on your side when you appeal the denial or the amount of the settlement offer can drastically improve your chances of success. Bringing an attorney to the table when you deal with an insurance company shows the company that you know your rights and that you mean business.
Contact the lawyers at Gilman & Bedigian online for the legal help you need when you are dealing with an insurance company.