I know sometimes I repeat myself. Why do I do this? Some things are so important and go against everything you have been told for so long that you need to hear it a few times. Some other things I repeat because I saw this mistake made over and over when I was an adjuster. So, here are 5 things you should not do with your insurance claim.
1. DO NOT SIGN ANY PAPERS
The adjuster will want you to sign releases and authorizations. Until you know what these papers mean, do not sign them. An authorization can allow them to get your entire medical history - even records not related to the accident. This is especially important for women. You do NOT want an adjuster to get access to your pap smears or mammograms or any other medical records not related to the accident. Do not sign these forms.
2. DO NOT ALLOW PICTURES TO BE TAKEN OF YOU
The adjuster will want to take pictures of your injuries. Do not let them take pictures because the pictures may not show any injury, even though you are injured.
3. DO NOT TALK TO THE OTHER PERSON
Nothing good comes when the two parties talk. Just avoid this completely. It will only lead to arguments and that does not help your case. You cannot settle your case with the other driver or the owner of the other car. So avoid this completely.
4. DO NOT LET THE INSURANCE COMPANY DICTATE YOUR MEDICAL TREATMENT
Some adjusters will tell you how much treatment you should have. Let your doctor dictate your treatment, not the insurance adjuster. The doctor won't tell you how to handle your claim (at least, he shouldn't tell you how to handle your car accident) and the adjuster should not tell you what treatment you need, what treatment is reasonable, or what treatment should cost. You and your doctor should make these decisions!
5. DO NOT MISS ANY DEADLINES
If you miss a legal deadline, your case may be over before it starts. Do not miss a deadline by waiting too long. Some deadlines may be very short. You need to know what deadlines apply to your case. If you do not know what the deadline is, talk to an attorney. If you wait too long to talk to an attorney, you may miss an important deadline.
Read this. Read it a second time. Do not make these mistakes. If you have a question, talk to an attorney before you make any decisions.