Category: Car accident claims

car crash

After the Car Crash: Do I Need to Hire an Insurance Attorney?

After a car crash, what you will probably notice most of all is how shaken you are. No matter what type of accident you have had, from a fender bender to a catastrophic crash, the adrenaline flow may feel shocking, and it can take some time to get over, depending on the level of trauma.

If you have been in a collision in your car, truck, or motorcycle (or even while traveling on foot or on a bicycle), what is most important at first is to establish your physical well-being, and whether you need an ambulance—or whether any of your passengers do. After taking time to pull your car over, catching your breath, and collecting yourself so that you can get out of the vehicle to further survey and understand what just really happened, you will need to do all the routine exercises such as getting contact information from everyone, establishing whether there are witnesses, taking photos of the scene, and seeking medical help at some point if necessary.

Afterward, if you have been seriously injured due the negligence of another driver, chances are the other insurer will be contacting you quickly. You may not even make it home before the phone starts ringing, and you find yourself suddenly presented with many questions—some of which may seem almost aggressive and difficult to answer. If you are in the hospital, or at home recuperating, speaking to an insurance adjuster can be stressful. This is not something you should have to handle on your own though, and upon speaking with your injury attorney, most likely you will discover they want you to refer all calls and questions to them from that point forward.

Insurance adjusters are skilled at what they do: closing out cases as quickly as possible and paying out as little money as possible! Because of this, if you have a case, you will need an experienced attorney to act in your best interest. And if the insurer shows signs of acting in bad faith, you may need to change direction and hire a bad faith insurance attorney from an office like the Bolender Law Firm.

If you are worried about signs of bad faith, red flags may have erupted like major delays without any reasonable excuse, requests for overwhelming amounts of paperwork, and even intimidation tactics such as instructing you to take a lowball offer (because it may be all you will get) or even going so far as to harass witnesses in the case.

If you need help reviewing your insurance policy, or if you suspect your insurance company may be denying your claim in bad faith, contact the attorneys at the Bolender Law Firm.  If a dispute over a claim cannot be easily resolved through a call or written communication, our attorneys will advocate on behalf of policyholders through litigation, arbitration, or non-binding mediation. Our attorneys are experienced in representing clients in state and federal courts, at both the trial and appellate level. Call us at 310-320-0725 now or submit an easy consultation request online. We are here to help!

insurance claim

Filing an Insurance Claim: Communications with the Insurer Should Be Easy

When it comes to the actual process of purchasing an insurance policy the steps are clear. First, and especially if you’re purchasing multiple lines of insurance, you need to find a good agent. Often our best suggestions come from friends and family. You may be having dinner with your parents or another relative and find out that they have worked with the same insurance agent for many years. In other cases, you may read about an agent online, and upon meeting them feel extremely comfortable and ready to purchase. The requirement should be that the insurance agent is educated about the types of insurance you need, that they are able to research and suggest all the facets required to protect your finances and property.

Once you have purchased your insurance, your job is to fulfill the details of the policy, agreeing that you will pay on time, mainly; however, there are of course other stipulations such as not making any changes to the existing property without letting them know, and following the proper steps if you do have an accident or damage to your home. Chances are, you have kept up your end of the bargain and paid the bill. And when you go to file a claim, everything should run just as smoothly for you as it did for them over the years while you were paying untold thousands in premiums.

Payments for premiums are not always easy to come by, and if you have suddenly had a problem or reason to file a claim, you probably feel quite serious about reaping the rewards now of owning that policy.

But what if the insurance company does not respond? What if they are difficult to deal with? What if they are disorganized, or what if they are completely nonresponsive? If you are worried about any of those things, you may be dealing with an insurance company acting in bad faith. This can be a very disturbing realization, and you will need the help of a skilled bad faith law insurance firm like the Bolender Law Firm.

Other red flags surrounding bad faith practices may include unreasonable delays or an outright denial that does not seem right. They may have somehow tried to convince you that the details of your policy are different from what you thought, meaning that you will be denied, or they may request excessive amounts of documentation, Hoping that you will bow out of the claim all together and just forget about it. If you are having difficulty with your insurance company, the first step is to ask what the problem is. It may be a clear-cut issue, or they may have had a snag in their investigation of your claim. But if you see any signs of bad faith, do not try to go it alone and continue communicating with the insurer or trying to set things right. This is the job for an experienced lawyer who will be able to protect your best interests.

If you need help reviewing your insurance policy, or if you suspect your insurance company may be denying your claim in bad faith, contact the attorneys at the Bolender Law Firm.  If a dispute over a claim cannot be easily resolved through a call or written communication, our attorneys will advocate on behalf of policyholders through litigation, arbitration, or non-binding mediation. Our attorneys are experienced in representing clients in state and federal courts, at both the trial and appellate level. Call us at 310-320-0725 now or submit an easy consultation request online. We are here to help!

 

insurance adjusters

Insurance Adjusters Asking About Your Medical Condition: Why You Should Not Answer

If an insurance adjuster has just called, you may be somewhat startled by the speed in which they not only procured your phone number, but also how quickly they opened communications and began pelting you with questions. This is not always the most thoughtful way to treat someone who may have just been in a major or even catastrophic car accident, but insurance, as we all know, is about business. Insurance adjusters are heavily invested in protecting their company, and often their own finances too as they may be offered extra bonuses and lucrative compensation for saving their company time and money. This means that they have probably become very skilled at convincing policyholders to take the least amount of money as possible in a settlement, and quickly.

So, don’t be surprised if you get a call even while you may still be in the hospital. It may seem like an intrusion, and the truth is that you do not have to speak to them, then, or ever. This is a job for your car accident attorney, and if you do not have one yet, consult with an experienced injury firm as soon as possible. This could be vital to your case, and your settlement.

Insurance adjusters are very crafty at getting as much information from you as possible and then using whatever they can against you too. And as we often mention, the insurance companies are not your friend, and they did not become billionaires through attempting to win a popularity contest. So, if the insurance adjuster is on the other line and you are flustered or not sure what to do, you may give them some basic facts like your name, policy number, and the date and most elementary facts about your accident.

Insurance adjusters will ask for police records and medical records, and they may ask to tape record any or all conversations. Do not give out any information about your medical condition. Although you may be quite certain you know what is wrong; for example, maybe you have a broken leg. You may be tempted to pass on this seemingly basic fact when you speak to the insurance adjuster but as is common in car accidents, there may be some time before other medical issues emerge.

You could have much more complex health issues or internal damage than you realize, which is why you should not tell the adjuster anything about your health or the current injuries.  In many cases they will try to insinuate that an older injury is what is causing you pain or discomfort, when you are obviously suffering due to a car accident.

If you need help reviewing your insurance policy, or if you suspect your insurance company may be denying your claim in bad faith, contact the attorneys at the Bolender Law Firm.  If a dispute over a claim cannot be easily resolved through a call or written communication, our attorneys will advocate on behalf of policyholders through litigation, arbitration, or non-binding mediation. Our attorneys are experienced in representing clients in state and federal courts, at both the trial and appellate level. Call us at 310-320-0725 now or submit an easy consultation request online. We are here to help!

auto accidents

Auto Accidents: Adjusters May Point to Older Injuries

Even a slight fender bender can be terrifying. The adrenaline flow is tremendous, and you may lose focus regarding what to do, aside from catching your breath. After pulling over if possible, begin assessing yourself and your passengers for injuries. Unfortunately, far too many car accidents today result in serious injuries or even death. There may be serious spinal or neck injuries, traumatic brain injuries or concussion, broken bones, contusions, and more—and this goes for motorcycle and other traffic injuries too.

It is critical to seek medical attention immediately after experiencing such an accident. Even if there is just a slight question regarding whether you may be hurt, have it checked out. Why? Because many injuries may not be completely apparent at first and may ‘settle in’ later. With X-rays and a medical once-over, your doctor can either treat you or rule out an injury. In some cases, you may be injured so badly that a hospital stay is required. During that time, you may be shocked to find the adjuster already calling to get information about the accident. They may want exact details of what happened, they may want your medical records forwarded as soon as possible, and may even ask to tape record your conversations. If you become uncomfortable during these discussions, it may be with good reason.

You could have a cut and dry case with no problems or reason for much discussion at all, but in a larger more complex case where you or a loved one have sustained significant injuries, expect a comprehensive investigation with lots of questions—and some that you may not feel up to handling while you are trying to heal. If you have been injured due to the negligence of others, consult with a skilled injury attorney, and allow them to handle all communication with the insurer. This could be critical to your case as adjusters will be hanging on your every word and will be especially focused on your injuries. They are skilled at tripping people up and may inquire about past injuries as they hope to avoid paying a claim, pointing to maladies in the past which could be responsible for your current pain—rather than the car accident which was truly the reason.

As they become more aggressive in their insertions, the case could become tricky—which is why you need expert legal help whether from your injury attorney or a bad faith insurance attorney from the Bolender Law Firm.

If you need help reviewing your insurance policy, or if you suspect your insurance company may be denying your claim in bad faith, contact the attorneys at the Bolender Law Firm.  If a dispute over a claim cannot be easily resolved through a call or written communication, our attorneys will advocate on behalf of policyholders through litigation, arbitration, or non-binding mediation. Our attorneys are experienced in representing clients in state and federal courts, at both the trial and appellate level. Call us at 310-320-0725 now or submit an easy consultation request online. We are here to help!

car accident

Injured After a Car Accident? Don’t Fight the Insurer on Your Own

A car accident can be a terrifying experience, and the effects can be long-lasting. While some motorists are killed, others may suffer from neck and spinal injuries, traumatic brain injuries, serious burns, broken bones, and more. If you have been in a crash, and seriously injured, you may have lost hours at work while recuperating or you may have been forced to stop working completely—whether temporarily or permanently. This can be an extremely difficult time, and while the physical effects may drag on—so can the financial issues and the frustrations of filing an insurance claim.

If you were in an automobile crash due to the negligence of another party, the claims process is more complex than just filing for an inconsequential fender bender that may have left a dent or chipped some paint. When injuries are caused due to an accident, and a police report is filed, you can bet that the adjusters for the other side will be on the case faster than you can say “I’m home from the emergency room!” You may find yourself surprised at how quickly they call, and at how many questions they have! This is not the time to be speaking to an insurance adjuster, but it is time to be consulting with an experienced injury attorney.

Due to an impending lawsuit or settlement, it is in your best interest to let your attorney do all the talking when it comes to the insurance company. Without their help, you may find yourself being asked to do tape-recorded interviews, sign medical release forms and give access to medical records and other information, all the while feeling like you are in good hands because the adjusters come across as warm, empathetic, and trustworthy. What may truly be happening behind the scenes is that adjusters are gathering information to use against you later, so they can either deny you a settlement or get away with a lowball offer. Be wary also of bad faith practices such as no investigation of the case at all, failure to interview any witnesses who were on the scene, overlooking obvious evidence, delaying settlements, and denying claims with no cause.

If you need help reviewing your insurance policy, or if you suspect your insurance company may be denying your claim in bad faith, contact the attorneys at the Bolender Law Firm.  If a dispute over a claim cannot be easily resolved through a call or written communication, our attorneys will advocate on behalf of policyholders through litigation, arbitration, or non-binding mediation. Our attorneys are experienced in representing clients in state and federal courts, at both the trial and appellate level. Call us at 310-320-0725 now or submit an easy consultation request online. We are here to help!

car accident

Do Not Delay Seeking Medical Help If You Are Injured in a Car Accident

While tens of thousands are killed in the US each year due to car accident injuries (last year, those numbers hovered around 40,000 deaths annually), there are millions of traffic incidents each year. And as the numbers of motorists continue to grow, so do car crashes, along with motorcycle accidents, and those involving pedestrians and bicyclists too. Nothing is worse than hearing that sickening thud or screeching wheels as your car is hit by another motorist—but the best outcome is that of a harmless fender bender. And although that is a common occurrence on the roads, far too often there are accidents resulting in concussions or traumatic brain injuries, neck and spinal injuries, broken bones, and more.

As drivers, most of us will experience several car accidents in our lifetimes. That isn’t something most of us like to think about much. Having a healthy amount of respect for the dangers of the road and driving defensively is vital though, especially as the numbers of distracted drivers seem to grow—even with so much public safety information out there today warning about the potential for catastrophe in texting and driving along with other activities such as talking on cell phones, fiddling with other electronics, eating, engaging with passengers, and more. Distracted drivers—along with drunken, reckless, and speeding motorists—are still responsible for far too many accidents and deaths.

In the unfortunate case that you are in a car accident, after pulling over (if that is possible), ascertain whether anyone in the car has injuries. While it may be obvious that you or one or more passengers require an ambulance, if there is any question at all seek medical attention as soon as possible. If you are suffering from an injury, but delay in having treatment, that could result in a big question mark for the insurer—and especially if you were hit due to the negligence of another motorist with the potential for a serious lawsuit or settlement.

Make sure to file the claim directly following the accident and your visit to the hospital or doctor, and consult with a skilled injury attorney who will be able to speak with insurance adjusters on your behalf.

If you need help reviewing your insurance policy, or if you suspect your insurance company may be denying your claim in bad faith, contact the attorneys at the Bolender Law Firm.  If a dispute over a claim cannot be easily resolved through a call or written communication, our attorneys will advocate on behalf of policyholders through litigation, arbitration, or non-binding mediation. Our attorneys are experienced in representing clients in state and federal courts, at both the trial and appellate level. Call us at 310-320-0725 now or submit an easy consultation request online. We are here to help!

car wrecks

Car Wrecks: Make Sure You Have a Copy of the Accident Report

While some motorists travel as if on autopilot, commuting and running daily errands, many of us proceed with extreme caution every time we head onto the roads. With statistics showing that traffic accidents just continue to rise, everyone should be worried today whether they are traveling by car, on two wheels, or on foot. This means practicing more diligence and defensive driving than ever, along with knowing what to do if you are in an accident.

Most of us would rather think about a million other things than what to do or how to prepare for the aftermath of a car wreck; unfortunately, most drivers will be involved in at least one traffic accident in their lives. For some, a car crash means debilitating and life-changing injuries—for others it can still mean substantial property damage and trauma, even if it is just emotional. Depending on the severity of the accident, there may be grounds for a lawsuit or your injury attorney may be involved in settlement talks with the insurance company. What you do right after the accident could have a major bearing on your case though, so take time now to be prepared for such an occurrence later.

Making sure there is an accident report is the first course of action. This happens after you call the police. If you were in a wreck due to the negligence of others, they may not want to call the police, or it may seem like no one is hurt. In some cases, the at-fault party may just want to offer you their personal information or even just cash in exchange for everyone leave the scene without calling local law enforcement. Unless you have been in an extremely minimal fender bender, such behavior is almost always unacceptable. An accident report should be completed, and it is vital that you have a copy to pass on to your attorney, as well as the insurance company later.

If anyone is injured on the scene, an ambulance should be called immediately. If you have any question at all that you or a passenger (or if someone seems injured and unconscious or groggy in the other car) is hurt, it is still recommended that you act immediately. Keep in mind also that waiting to be treated may look questionable later if you are involved in a lawsuit regarding the accident. Contact information and insurance information should be traded as soon as possible after the accident, and if you have access to a camera, photograph both cars, license plates, and the entire traffic scene—to include road signs, traffic signs and lights, and any other pertinent information. Contact information should be requested from witnesses too.

If you need help reviewing your insurance policy, or if you suspect your insurance company may be denying your claim in bad faith, contact the attorneys at the Bolender Law Firm.  If a dispute over a claim cannot be easily resolved through a call or written communication, our attorneys will advocate on behalf of policyholders through litigation, arbitration, or non-binding mediation. Our attorneys are experienced in representing clients in state and federal courts, at both the trial and appellate level. Call us at 310-320-0725 now or submit an easy consultation request online. We are here to help!

claims

Claims: How Much Documentation Will the Insurer Require from Me?

Even in a world that is becoming increasingly wireless—and paperless—there is still plenty of paperwork and documentation required for different services, whether you are operating on the business or personal level. From beginning to end, insurance is about the paperwork; in fact, that’s really all you will have to show for your expenditure as you walk away with a policy in hand, and the cost could be quite substantial for something that is virtually non-tangible.

Read Your Policy & Know What to Expect

Whether you are purchasing car insurance, life insurance, or a variety of different types of business insurance, documentation is required in the beginning and there may continue to be different requests and requirements. When it comes to a claim though, the insurer may ask for a surprising amount of information. This could be even further exaggerated if the insurer has another agenda, whether they are trying to rule out fraud or are practicing in bad faith and hoping to inconvenience you to the point of dropping a case.

A car accident case is usually a good example. If you were injured due to the negligence of another party, don’t be surprised to begin hearing from the other motorist’s insured almost immediately. You may have barely made it out of the doctor’s office or emergency room and into the garage before your phone starts ringing. If you are suddenly dealing with a physical challenge due to injury—and one that could be quite serious and even long-term—it may be extremely difficult to deal with the number of questions an adjuster wants to ask. They may also be trying to trip you up as you discuss the facts and then hope to pin some of the blame for the accident on you. Because of this it is in your best interest (and that of any potential legal case) to refer all insurance calls to your car accident or injury attorney.

Be Suspicious if the Insurer Asks for Inordinate Amounts of Paperwork

In an example like a car accident claim, you can expect requests for paperwork such as a copy of your license and insurance coverage, the accident report filed by local law enforcement, and any medical records. An experienced attorney will be well-apprised of the usual documentation required, and at alert if the insurance company seems to be trying to intimidate you into dropping the case or deny the claim altogether. For other types of insurance—and especially those with large settlement amounts at stake, the insurer may begin reaching far outside the realm of normal paperwork, asking for tax returns and other financial records as they build a case to show fraud or another problem that could feasibly cause the case to be dismissed or allow them to deny quickly.

The amount of information that can be requested is sometimes not clear, and you may have trouble finding that specifically outlined anywhere. If you suspect bad faith practices, call the Bolender Law Firm as soon as possible for help. Other red flags to watch for are lack of an investigation into the case, constant delays that don’t seem to have any rationale behind them, as well as an outright lowball offer.

Contact Us for Help!

If you need help reviewing your insurance policy, or if you suspect your insurance company may be denying your claim in bad faith, contact the attorneys at the Bolender Law Firm.  If a dispute over a claim cannot be easily resolved through a call or written communication, our attorneys will advocate on behalf of policyholders through litigation, arbitration, or non-binding mediation. Our attorneys are experienced in representing clients in state and federal courts, at both the trial and appellate level. Call us at 310-320-0725 now or submit an easy consultation request online. We are here to help!

Commercial truck crashes

Commercial Truck Crashes: The Potential for Damage & Injury is Greater

You probably travel numerous roads each day for any number of mundane tasks. While there is the daily commute, other responsibilities call too such as carrying children to and from to school and activities, the endless grocery shopping, trips to pick up a range of different consumer items, and often visits to doctor’s office and other appointments. On most days, the drive will be just as uneventful as the day before, but chances are you will have at least one car accident in your life time. Busy roads, often with a melee of cars, trucks, motorcycles, bicyclists, and pedestrians, can be deceptively dangerous for everyone traveling—and in fact, car accidents and fatality rates continue to rise at an alarming rate, showing a 13 percent increase just over two years.

Trucks Weigh Exponentially More

Just as pedestrians and bicyclists are more vulnerable due to the potential of a 4,000-pound car striking them, cars (and everyone else) are at significantly more risk when hit by a truck—and mainly commercial trucks which could anywhere from 10,000 pounds to 80,000. In the case of an accident where a large truck hits a car, the collision could be much more complex as a smaller vehicle could be completely crushed, resulting in serious injuries if not death. There may be trailers involved and 18 wheels to contend with as trucks jackknife or contort with the pressure of a crash. Along with that, there is the concern of the truck’s contents at the time of an accident. While there may be many pounds of inventory, serious environmental hazards could arise with a chemical spill or other toxins.

Injuries in an Accident with a Truck Can Be More Serious or Fatal

If you were harmed in an accident due to negligence on the part of a commercial truck driver (or any other motorist), you could have sustained major injuries (brain injuries, spine and neck injuries, broken bones, and more are common) and been out of work temporarily or permanently. An experienced injury attorney should be the one to speak with any insurance adjustors who may call—and especially if they are prying for information or offering you a quick settlement. Keep in mind that their goal is usually to pay out as little for your accident as possible—and to tie up the case with as little time and effort as possible.

Contact Us for Help Now!

If you suspect your insurance company may be denying your claim in bad faith, contact the attorneys at the Bolender Law Firm.  If a dispute over a claim cannot be easily resolved through a call or written communication, our attorneys will advocate on behalf of policyholders through litigation, arbitration, or non-binding mediation. Our attorneys are experienced in representing clients in state and federal courts, at both the trial and appellate level. Call us at 310-320-0725 now or submit an easy consultation request online. We are here to help!

 

Automobile accident

Automobile Accident: Do You Know What to Do Afterward?

You and your family probably spend a lot of time in the car, usually without the worry of an automobile accident; in fact, you may feel like you live there more than your own home due to what could be a lengthy commute every day, further travel for business trips, typical errands, and drop-offs and pickups for kids. It is easy to let your guard down and almost drive on auto pilot sometimes, but with traffic incidents continuing to rise in the US, extreme diligence and defensive driving are more important than ever. This goes for anyone on the road too, whether you are in a car, driving a motorcycle, riding a bike, or walking.

The reality is that in nearly any journey you will pass distracted drivers who can’t tear themselves away from their cell phones, those who are speeding, ignoring traffic rules, or even driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol. Their negligence may put you at risk for a car accident at any time, meaning that you should be prepared far ahead of time to know what to do afterward. Here are five of the most important tips:

  1. Stop the car and take just a few moments to catch your breath and collect yourself after the trauma of an accident. The adrenaline flow afterward will be significant, and it is important to try and get your bearings, so you can then establish whether you or anyone else in the car are injured, as well as checking on the other parties involved.
  2. Call the police immediately and file an accident report, as well as making sure medical help is on the way in the case of injuries. Make sure to note the police officer’s name and badge number and ask for a way to get in touch with them afterward.
  3. Trade all pertinent insurance information and contact information with the other motorist(s).
  4. Take pictures. If you can snap photos of damage to both cars, along with the license plate of the other vehicle. It may also be helpful to have any photos of the entire traffic area, including where the accident occurred, traffic signs, crosswalks, and stoplights.
  5. Ask any possible witnesses for contact information also, as this may be the only time you ever see them again and they could be vital to your case.

If you need help reviewing your insurance policy, or if you suspect your insurance company may be denying your claim in bad faith, contact the attorneys at the Bolender Law Firm.  If a dispute over a claim cannot be easily resolved through a call or written communication, our attorneys will advocate on behalf of policyholders through litigation, arbitration, or non-binding mediation. Our attorneys are experienced in representing clients in state and federal courts, at both the trial and appellate level. Call us at 310-320-0725 now or submit an easy consultation request online. We are here to help!