Ohio State Patrol has investigated 46,389 auto accidents year-to-date in 2018—including 822 fatalities. And, that only includes those accidents reported.
Many accidents, reported or not, will lead to insurance company issues. The companies involved will argue responsibility, damages, and personal injuries. And, they will lengthen the process it takes to satisfy the parties involved. Dealing with uncooperative insurance companies may require the assistance of an experienced auto accident attorney, sooner than later.
Here’s How to Dispute a Car Insurance Claim in 10 Easy Steps:
- Identify your problem: An insurance company may claim that the accident or injury falls outside the policy coverage. Or, it might insist damages have been determined incorrectly or unfairly. If you are confident after reviewing your policy, then you should assert the insurance company’s offer was inadequate and you expect more.
- Check the law: Insurance companies must comply with state rules. If you check state law on the state website and find your insurer violates them, your dispute is all the stronger.
- Use a third party: Insurance appraisers work for their employers’ interests. But, an independent appraiser may see things differently.
- Document, document, document: You must collect and organize all communications regarding the claim. Gather any notes, letters, reports, texts, and emails.
- Make that call: With your work and thoughts organized, you must call the insurance company to report the problem the way you see it. If you stay firm but polite, you can make a stronger impression.
- Put it in writing: Having reported your complaint to the insurance company, you should put your understanding in writing to the claim adjuster. That letter will serve to prove you have reported the dispute.
- Amp up the dispute: If the insurer fails to honor its commitment or ignores your dispute, it is time to complain to the Ohio Department of Insurance. They will investigate your complaint.
- Get a lawyer: With an experienced lawyer behind you, you can present the best case. With all your records prepared, you can visit this attorney’s office to see what dispute you have. The lawyer may or may not recommend suing. Lawyers can negotiate your claim dispute without going to court.
- Think about mediation: The lawyer may show how mediation may be in your best interest. A third-party mediator will negotiate a resolution that satisfies everyone without the cost of going to court.
- Go to court: Depending on the state’s limits, you can take a dispute to Small Claims Court. With all your records with you, you can navigate Small Claims Court on your own. But, if need a settlement on a larger claim, you can press your lawyer to sue the insurance company for its bad faith practice.
Dealing with Uncooperative Insurance Companies
Insurance companies have obligations to their stakeholders. They should not reward frivolous claims. But, they should honor their commitments to policyholders, too. So, if you find yourself unhappy with the insurance company’s handling of your claim, these 10 recommendations should help.