A few years back, CNN conducted an 18 month long investigation to research how major insurance companies handle the claims of individuals who are injured in car accidents. Injuries included damage to muscles, ligaments, and tendons, all referred to as “soft tissue damage.” The results of this study are quite revealing and highlight several reasons why you need a lawyer when you’ve been injured in a car accident.
Insurance companies are for profit companies. Their main concern is making money for their shareholders. They do not want to pay out any sum of money, especially not a large sum, to anyone. The major players in the insurance world train their agents to give out low ball offers and to try to settle claims quickly and for very little money. Results from the CNN study backed these findings:
“Since the mid-1990s, most of the major insurance companies — led by the two largest, Allstate and State Farm — have adopted a tough take-it-or-leave-it strategy when dealing with such cases. The result has been billions in profits for insurance companies and little, if anything, for the public.”
Shannon Kmatz a police officer and former All State claims agent said:
“Company employees were encouraged to get rid of claims quickly and cheaply and even offered accident victims as little as $50, telling them to take it or leave it.”
$50 won’t even cover your copay, but the insurance companies just want you to go away, absolving them of any and all responsibility. Should you suffer from a soft tissue injury, the insurance company will most likely offer you as little as possible to settle your claim and expect you to just take it, graciously.
An experienced personal injury attorney will take a stand on your behalf to be sure these low-dollar offers aren’t even on the table for you to consider.The bottom line is, with an attorney on your side you won’t need to worry about dealing with highly trained adjusters or claims agents trying to low ball you. Without one, you’re almost sure of being offered a laughable sum and being told to “take it or leave it.”