It usually starts with a phone call from the adjuster handling the claim. He or she will first want to get your information including a request to tape an interview with you about the accident. Be careful, while the adjuster will be nice and act like the interview is no big deal, there is no other reason they are doing it but to use it against you later should you file suit. We always tell our clients to respectfully refuse to give a taped interview about the accident.
This is usually the one area where the insurance company will treat you fairly by handling the repair or paying you for the total loss of your vehicle without much difficulty. If you have possession of your vehicle after the accident, the insurance company will want to arrange to have an appraiser come out to look at the damage and take photographs. If the vehicle is at the tow yard, the adjuster will arrange to view the car their. Shortly thereafter, you will be told what they are will to pay you for the loss of the vehicle or what it will cost to repair the damage. If repairs are warranted, the adjuster will often recommend a shop to take it to. Remember, you do not have to take the car to the insurance company’s shop, you can use a trusted repair company you have a relationship with already. If your car is a total loss, the insurance company will make you an offer for the value of the vehicle at the time of the accident. Often, clients are told by the adjuster that they do not go by Kelly Blue Book rates.
South Carolina law requires you to prove fault. Just because the investigating officer did not issue a citation does not mean that the other driver cannot be proven to be at fault for the accident. We are experienced auto accident lawyers who have had great success proving fault in car accident cases.
The insurance company will try to offer you as little as possible for your injuries. Typically, they do this by making a small offer within days or weeks of the accident that looks attractive at the time because it is too early to know exactly the extent of your injuries or the course of treatment that will be required to get you well. We recommend speaking to an attorney before accepting any offer from the insurance company.
Your Uninsured Motorist coverage will cover you.This is your insurance policies protection and is a separate coverage limit from what your policy provides for property damage or bodily injury. The rules involving uninsured motorist coverage can be tricky. We understand uninsured motorist coverage and can make sure you are fairly compensated.
The insurance company will not pay your medical bills on an ongoing basis. They will only pay you a lump sum amount, if at all, to settle the claim once and for all. As attorneys, we cannot pay your medical bills either. Thus, you must use other payment sources such as your own medical insurance policy, medical payments coverage under an automobile insurance policy, Medicare and Medicade, and other potential sources. When your claim has concluded, we will assist you in negotiating the amount of medical bills to be reimbursed to insurance companies and medical treatment providers.