How Insurance Companies Devalue or Deny Valid Truck Accident Claims
If you or somebody you care about has been injured in an accident involving a commercial truck, you may be able to recover compensation for your losses. However, insurance carriers for the truck driver or trucking company will likely do what they can to devalue or even deny the claim. Here, we want to discuss how insurance carriers do this, as well as the importance of working with a skilled truck accident attorney when beginning the process of recovering compensation.
What Will the Insurance Carrier Do?
Some of the methods that an insurance carrier could use to devalue or deny a valid claim include:
- Challenging liability. This could include disputing fault by arguing that the truck driver was not negligent or that the claimant was partially responsible for the accident. The carrier could question the claimant’s credibility by challenging their version of events.
- Delaying the claims process. This could manifest as extending investigation periods and requesting additional documentation, causing delays and frustration for the claimant. The insurance carrier could repeatedly request duplicate or unnecessary information to create confusion and hinder the progress of the claim.
- Minimizing the severity of the incident. A carrier could downplay the severity of injuries and damages suffered by the claimant. It is not uncommon for them to dispute medical evidence and opinions to reduce the value of medical treatment and rehabilitation expenses.
- Using their own experts. Insurance carriers often engage expert witnesses who may provide skewed or biased assessments of the accident, injuries, or damages to undermine the claimant’s case. Presenting conflicting expert opinions creates doubt and weakens the claimant’s position.
- Offering a settlement. Making early settlement offers that significantly undervalue the claim to encourage quick acceptance and discourage any further pursuit of the claim is a common tactic.
- Finding a policy limitation. Citing policy exclusions or limitations to deny coverage for certain aspects of the claim, such as specific damages or circumstances surrounding the accident, could delay the process.
- Surveillance and investigation on the victim. Conducting surveillance on the claimant is an insurance carrier tactic to gather evidence that could be used to challenge the legitimacy of their claim. They could also investigate the claimant’s background and medical history to find inconsistencies or pre-existing conditions that can be used to devalue the claim.
How Will a Truck Accident Lawyer Help?
Proving a truck accident claim can be a complex and challenging process. Hiring a skilled accident lawyer who specializes in truck accident claims can provide significant advantages in combating the methods used by insurance carriers:
Attorneys who regularly handle truck accident claims will understand the laws and regulations governing commercial trucking. They understand the complexities involved in investigating and proving liability in truck accidents.
Thorough Investigation into the Accident
An attorney will have the resources and expertise to conduct an investigation into the truck accident, gathering crucial evidence such as accident reports, witness statements, and black box data from the truck. Your truck accident lawyer in California can work with accident reconstruction experts to prove what happened.
Negotiating with the Other Parties
In the aftermath of an accident, there are various aspects that need to be considered to ensure you receive just compensation. These include covering medical expenses, accounting for lost wages, addressing future medical needs, acknowledging pain and suffering, and more. It is important to work towards a comprehensive settlement that takes into account all the ways in which you have been affected by the incident, ensuring that you are fairly compensated for the damages you have endured.
Handling the Procedural Steps
Truck accident claims involve intricate legal and insurance documentation that can be overwhelming for individuals to navigate alone. Your lawyer will handle all the paperwork, ensuring accuracy and adherence to legal deadlines, minimizing the risk of claim denial due to technicalities.
If necessary, attorneys can take your case to court and present a compelling argument on your behalf. They are experienced in litigation strategies and can effectively challenge biased expert opinions and present evidence to counter insurance carriers’ tactics.
Truck Accident Statistics
During the most recent reporting year on file, there were more than 5,788 total fatalities resulting from large truck crashes, according to the National Safety Council. Additionally, more than 117,000 individuals sustained injuries as a result of these incidents.