Tips On Negotiating Car Insurance Claims
You have spent time and money getting the perfect auto insurance policy, but what if something happens and you need to file a claim? As long as you follow all the right steps when filing an insurance claim, you should be on your way to a successful result. However, if the accident was found to be your fault, it can be a lot harder to file a claim and complete an insurance settlement. If this happens, you will need to negotiate with the insurance company and hopefully still be liable for an insurance settlement. These are the main aspects of negotiating a car insurance claim.
Disputing the Insurance Claim
If you have been denied a settlement from your car insurance company, the first step is to dispute the claim. This will mean you're going to dispute who should pay the damages for the car. Typically, you would need an independent appraiser to determine how many damages there are. Someone who does not work for an insurance company is advisable, as they will be impartial when appraising the damage. You should also have all the proper documentation following the accident, including any written or photo documentation, especially if you're accused of being at fault when you really weren't.
Hire a Mediator
If the negotiating or disputing the claim didn't work, the next step is to go to arbitration. However before doing this, you should have a mediator. The mediator is going to look at all the information from your independent appraiser, you and the insurance company. They will also remain partial and sometimes come up with an appropriate negotiation on their own. By having a mediator, you have a chance to avoid going to court to settle it. It is their job to find something that works for both parties.
Going Into Arbitration
Sometimes, no negotiation can be made with the insurance company, and you need to go into arbitration. This means you're hiring an attorney to handle your case. This is a very expensive step, so try to work out a negotiation with the insurance company first. However if you do go to court, make sure you hire a reputable lawyer with experience dealing with small claims court and car insurance settlements specifically. This is going to increase your chances of having a good outcome.
If you have followed all the right steps after the incident, it may never come to this. Insurance companies often work with you to come up with a reasonable settlement working for both of you. After an accident, you should always take your own documentation. Not only is this good to offer to the insurance company and mediator, but by documenting it right away, what occurred during the accident stays fresh in your mind. So if you need to dispute or negotiate the claim, you have written statement about what occurred.